20 Important Facts about Clerical Aptitude Tests you need to Know

By | July 17, 2023
Facts about Clerical Aptitude Tests
You stand a better chance of passing the clerical aptitude test and getting the desired job by taking lots of practice questions.

This post provides complete information on clerical aptitude tests, including practice questions and answers to help you prepare effectively for it, to improve your chances of passing it and getting hired for a clerical or administrative role.

Please, read on:

What is Clerical Aptitude Tests?

Clerical aptitude tests are used to assess candidates’ skill level in their process of applying for clerical or administrative positions.

The employers want to discover your proficiency at tasks related to clerical or administrative work.

Verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, error checking, data filing, document management, and situational judgment skills are the most common skills that clerical aptitude tests assess.

Clerical job positions include secretaries, administrative assistants, as well as positions in data entry and office support.

If you are applying for any of the above-mentioned roles, then you will likely have to take a clerical aptitude test.

A full clerical aptitude test will include one or more of basic math, attention to detail, alphabet filing, grammar and spelling, data checking, math word problems, reading comprehension, vocabulary, and typing speed and accuracy.

You are advised to practice all of the subjects to get familiar with the types of questions and also get ready for your own test.

20 Important Facts about Clerical Aptitude Tests you need to Know

Here are important facts and tips about clerical aptitude tests to help you excel in it:

  1. Who makes use of Clerical Aptitude Tests and why?

Clerical jobs are available in each division, whether it is government, education, or finance, and a wide range of employers use the clerical aptitude tests to help restructure their hiring process.

In this era, having high-skilled clerical personnel is very important. Outwardly, little errors or incompetent administrative staff can have a vast effect on a company.

Therefore, utilizing clerical aptitude tests gives room for employers to filter out the type of candidates who possess the qualities they are seeking for specific positions.

By assessing multiple skills in one setting, which more accurately reflects day-to-day working life, recruiters can get a sense of how well someone might perform on the job.

For this reason, it’s very important to do your best if you are asked to take a clerical aptitude test as part of the hiring process as this will be a deciding factor in your application success.

  1. What work skills do Clerical Aptitude Tests measure?

Clerical duties can differ from diary management and taking messages to more complex tasks such as managing an inventory, supervising others, and managing customer data.

Regardless of the seniority of the position, there are some traits that are essential for all administrative staff.

Below are skills and aptitudes that clerical aptitude tests measure, including:

  • Time management

The recruiter wants to assess your ability to manage time effectively. This will help you in the role to reach deadlines and complete priorities effectively.

Time management skills will give you the ability to multitask and increase productivity.

  • Accuracy and speed

This skill is required when working with data. Employers often assess this aptitude with error checking tests also known as clerical checking.

You will be presented with series of information to detect errors and evaluate the accurate data under a time limit.

Your proficiency to work under pressure and at the same time maintains a high level of attention to detail will be proven through this assessment.

You may further be asked to sit for a typing test to judge your typing ability by words per minute and how many errors were made during the test.

Although many employers maintain different standards for this test, typing is a must-possess skill in the present workplace scenario.

  • Organization

You need good organizational skills when working in a clerical and administrative role. It will help you to even schedule your duties and manage your time efficiently.

Organization is a skill that many employers are looking for because it’s a quality that can enable you to prioritize your tasks and optimize productivity.

You need the skill when you want to arrange events and meetings.

  • Motivation

A motivational skill will allow you to use your own initiative and work independently in a clerical role.

With this skill set, your allocated tasks will be completed successfully and accuracy also maintained.

  • Interpersonal skills

Many clerical roles require that you will work with a lot of people from various departments and professional levels, and maintain a teamwork aptitude.

Therefore, in order to determine if you would be a good fit for their team, some employers use personality tests while others will ask you to take a situational judgment test to help assess your people and problem-solving skills.

  • Efficiency

An employee’s workload often involves multiple tasks that have strict time limits. In this situation, the employee needs efficiency to be sure of making progress through meeting deadlines and executing tasks perfectly.

  1. What are the personality traits that a Clerical Aptitude Test measures?

During a clerical aptitude test, employers evaluate certain personality traits including:

  • Collaborative

Clerical workers need the ability to work well in a team atmosphere, either in the form of supporting a team with an event, reorganizing the filing system, or assisting the finance team to get the end-of-the-year accounts ready.

  • People skills

As a clerical worker, you should be able to handle a variety of people such as clients, coworkers, and senior managers.

Showing polite, friendly, and approachable behavior is vital in a clerical workplace.

Remember that the approach you use when communicating with people will have an impact on the perception of a business.

Therefore, you need the ability to communicate effectively with people and build long-lasting professional relationships.

  • Discretion

Your work as a clerical worker requires that you have access to highly confidential information.

So, you must be trusted by your boss to exercise discretion and manage confidential information in a proper manner.

  1. What exact aptitudes are evaluated?

During the assessment of your clerical skills, your aptitudes also need to be assessed, and these include:

  • Verbal reasoning

Reading and synthesizing written information are important skills you need in your work as a clerical worker.

You should also be able to use accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation to write a well-structured document.

  • Numerical reasoning

You could be required to help with financial information depending on the nature of your role.

In this case, you need math skills to be able to work well with statistical information.

  • Document management

You need to be efficient and organized and also develop the ability to organize documents in a logical way.

  1. Common clerical skills

Clerical and administrative workers usually engage in multiple responsibilities, such as inputting data, handling correspondence, organizing records, and more.

A list of common clerical skills that might be evaluated by employers using aptitude tests is listed below:

  • Record-keeping

Your ability to keep accurate and efficient records can be assessed using this test.

In the questions that record-keeping skills might be evaluated, you could be required to organize a series of data or complete a table according to the data given.

  • Filing

Your knowledge of filing records and documents might be typically assessed according to various organizational systems using some clerical aptitude tests.

You should be ready to arrange the names of companies, people, and documents in alphabetical order.

  • Attention to detail

In an assessment of your attention to detail, you may come across questions that relate to how closely you can identify minor discrepancies in names, addresses, and words.

These questions might involve a presentation of a set of words or phrases in which you are asked to find their difference.

  • Spelling and grammar

Your written language skills are assessed using some questions to know your ability to communicate through writing while working in a clerical position.

In the questions, you might be asked to select which word is spelled correctly or which sentence is grammatically correct.

  • Numerical reasoning

Numerical reasoning questions are meant to assess your mathematical abilities and numerical deduction skills.

You should get a paper ready as you might not be allowed to take this test using a calculator.

In the questions, you might typically be asked to solve a mathematical equation and enter the correct numerical result.

  • Typing

A section of the aptitude test is used to assess your typing speed and accuracy, and to measure your score against the professional average.

Forty-five (45) words per minute is usually an acceptable speed for entry-level positions, while some positions may demand 60 to 90 words per minute.

  1. What is the format of the Clerical Aptitude Tests and scoring pattern?

A clerical aptitude test consists of 6 segments and usually lasts 30 to 35 minutes, each of which will assess numerical skills, verbal skills, data checking, concentration, as well as alphabetic, numerical filing, and attention to detail.

  1. What is the best way to prepare for a Clerical Aptitude Test?

Practice is the best way to prepare for a clerical aptitude test. You can find good practice test questions online to use in your preparation for the test and passing it.

For language and math skills, consider basic comprehension tests and basic numeracy tests.

These will assist you tremendously in your preparation.

Taking practice tests is helpful; it gets you acquainted with the types of questions that will be asked during your clerical aptitude test.

  1. Ten tips for succeeding on the Clerical Aptitude Test

For you to attain success on the clerical aptitude tests, you must be fully committed to the task.

You need to practice and dedicate yourself to everything that is worth learning. Below are some tips that will assist you to succeed:

i. Prepare
ii. Read through the instructions carefully
iii. Pay attention to details
iv. Maintain speed and accuracy
v. Don’t waste time
vi. Don’t guess
vii. Perform effectively
viii. Stay calm
ix. Do away with distractions
x. Catch a good night’s sleep.

  1. How do Clerical Aptitude Tests work?

Roles for which several clerical aptitude tests are recruited include clerical workers, bank staff, cashiers, warehouse workers, and more.

These tests play an important role in helping employers sift through prospective candidates for enough efficiency in dealing with the competencies required in the job.

The clerical aptitude test typically consists of various subtests such as verbal reasoning tests, numerical ability tests, spelling checking, and more.

In the clerical aptitude test, you might be required to take a typing test administered on-screen.

Undergoing the typing test depends wholly on the company conducting the assessment as it’s optional.

  1. What kinds of jobs use Clerical Aptitude Tests for assessment purpose?

Many companies have developed an interest in the clerical aptitude test and use the assessment in their recruitment process.

Others have become accustomed to including these clerical aptitude tests in the assessment of candidates for administrative roles, clerical jobs, receptionist positions, and more.

Jobs that comprise these clerical aptitude tests are:

  • Council clerks
  • HR jobs or finance departments
  • Payroll clerks
  • Office clerk jobs
  • Court clerks working with judges
  • Brokerage clerks
  1. How hard are Clerical Aptitude Tests?

You might be presented with a context of various words to make use of their verbal ease during the clerical aptitude test.

You could also be required to compare diverse data and proofread the given statistics.

Your skills are required in solving word-related problems in a given specific period.

Moreover, in spelling assessments, you might be required to differentiate between various sets of spellings of the same word.

These tests require quick use of impulse and capabilities, although they could appear easy.

For this reason, you need to practice thoroughly when preparing for these clerical aptitude tests.

  1. How essential are Clerical Aptitude Tests for evaluation?

Companies have understood that they can’t overlook the hiring process of clerical staff, and so they included this section.

Considering the fact that an inefficient clerk is dangerous for an organization’s success, they decided to test clerks in order to get a perfect match for each position.

Through these assessment tests, a candidate’s aptitude that is made up of both concentration and data-performing abilities can be evaluated.

  1. What type of knowledge is required to pass the Clerical Aptitude Tests?

In a clerical aptitude test, you’ll be required to indicate a variety of given items in a systematic and perfect approach.

This test is often used to assess a candidate for roles where a little error can lead to major consequences.

Therefore, you need full concentration and correct answers to pass the clerical aptitude test.

Applying verbal and reasoning proficiencies can assist in solving various data problems.

  1. Clerical Aptitude Test tips?

These few tips will help you in your clerical aptitude tests, including:

  • Read the questions thoroughly

You might be tempted to skip over some important steps or feel pressured by the time limit to hurry, but ensure this doesn’t prevent you from being accurate and thorough.

  • Strategize

Practice will help you to understand the test structure and your strengths and weaknesses.

So, in order to improve your performance, collect all the information you can such as questions you can answer faster and the ones that take more time.

Identify those areas you are likely to make mistakes and make a psychological plan of your action so as to work through the questions more effectively.

  • Stay disciplined

Don’t get overwhelmed by pressure and anxiety. Once your strategy is worked out, stick tightly to it.

Stay disciplined and trust your technique after you have planned how to work.

  • Be sure of your answers

It’s always necessary to try and make out time to go through your answer at the end of the test during practice.

You will have the chance to identify errors and make corrections where necessary, as well as ensuring you answer all the questions.

  • Build self-confidence

Being confident will help you to conquer the stress involved in the clerical aptitude test.

You need to build self-confidence around your skills and abilities to make a great impact on your performance.

This will help you to trust your knowledge and attempt all the questions even the complex ones.

You can build your self-confidence in the clerical aptitude test abilities through practice.

You will feel more confident as you practice more and more.

  1. Clerical Numerical Reasoning test

The clerical aptitude test includes clerical numerical reasoning that consists of 12 tests making up a total of 240 questions and clerical number sequences that comprise 18 tests and 450 questions.

  • Numerical reasoning

The numerical reasoning assessment tests are designed to rate candidates based on the number operations, from simple and basic arithmetic to a higher level of logical reasoning and critical thinking.

Numerical reasoning is an important skill in this present age and a typical hard skill.

You may have a calculator in your pocket in the name of a cell phone but being able to offer quick and accurate estimates to implicit or explicit mathematical questions will give you a professional benefit.

The clerical numerical reasoning assessment test helps measure your cognitive arithmetic ability, financial arithmetic, fractions and percentages, number sequences and patterns, as well as logical interpretation of numerical arrays and tables of data.

This test was created to evaluate a numerical ability and doesn’t allow the use of calculators.

  • Clerical number sequences

This test measures your general ability to logically reason with numbers.

You will be required to find the missing number in a given sequence.

This first sequence has a definite pattern and you are asked to determine this pattern and thereby find the missing number.

  1. Clerical Verbal Reasoning test

This test is designed to assess the candidate’s abilities concerning verbal fluency, vocabulary, and reasoning ability for using words.

You may be required to take this test when searching for positions in administrative departments that demand possession of verbal ability.

In this assessment test, your verbal aptitude and verbal intelligence will be evaluated.

Through analyzing verbal concepts and constructs, your verbal comprehension and verbal rationale are assessed.

  1. Clerical Numerical Ability test

In this test, your ability to make use of numbers in the context of administrative and clerical jobs will be assessed.

You need to describe your potential in using numbers while working, like calculating diverse bills, managing expenses, and more. This test is necessary for assessing your numerical ability.

  1. Clerical Spelling Ability test

This assessment test is used to evaluate the abilities of a candidate to spell various words correctly.

The test consists of some phrases or sentences with incorrect spelling and you are asked to correct them.

At times, you may be offered various spellings of the same word and asked to find the correct spelling.

And then your ability to go through the data provided and proofread it will be tested.

  1. Clerical error checking proficiency test

This test gives employing organizations information about your overall ability to identify any errors fast in complex data.

Your attention to detail as well as your speed and accuracy will be assessed.

Error checking tests require a high degree of attention as a result of the comparison of data sets that comprise verbal and numerical information.

  1. Clerical Situational Judgment Tests (SJTs)

Companies use situational judgment tests to assess your ability to select the most appropriate action in usual workplace scenarios.

In these tests, which consist of 12 tests with 204 questions, your ability to deal with situations and handle real-life problems that you may come across while performing clerical tasks will be assessed.

Clerical Aptitude Tests Practice Questions and Answers

Here are sample clerical aptitude tests you can use for your practice:

Question 1

Clerical Aptitude Questions

Which of the words below makes the greatest comparison? Chimney is to smoke as tree is to:

A. Shade
B. Fireplace
C. Brick
D. Sky



Question 2

Numerical Ability Practice Question

Twenty papers cost hundred dollars as ten papers are used to make a file. How much does a file cost?

A. $10
B. $20
C. $40
D. $50



Question 3

Numerical Reasoning Question

What is the next number in 16 – 11 – 13 – 8 – 10 – 5 – 7 -?

A. 3
B. 2
C. 4
D. 5



Question 4

Spelling Ability

If these letters “ANICH” are rearranged, you would have the name of a/an:

A. Ocean
B. State
C. Country
D. City
E. Animal


China – Country


Hiring organizations utilize clerical aptitude tests in the hiring process to evaluate your skills, knowledge, and personality to see whether you are suitable for a specific position.

The clerical aptitude tests can be used at any level in the recruitment process and in different disciplines.

In order to excel in these tests, you must prepare very well with practice test questions.

>> Learn how to make a great score in Aptitude Tests, including IBEW/NJATC electrical aptitude test, situational judgement test, Kenexa, trade apprenticeship, Exxonmobil, civil service, firefighter exam, FBI test, etc. ; prepare for the test with free but effective practice tests.