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SHL numerical reasoning test

SHL Style Numerical Reasoning Tests

  • 25 tests
  • 400 questions
SHL numerical reasoning test

SHL’s numerical test is the most popular numerical reasoning test used by employers and recruiters around the world. It’s designed to assess how critically, quickly and accurately you can analyse and interpret charts, graphs, tables and other numerical data.

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Free example SHL style numerical questions

We recommend you start with our free SHL style numerical practice tests and questions. Each example practice question includes worked solutions.

After that, try the three example questions below. Answers and solutions follow after the questions.

1. Percentages

numerical percentage question

What was the average total percentage decrease in the number of homes sold by Bradfield Homes and Thompson Homes from May to June?

  • A) 18.18%
  • B) 13.26%
  • C) 13.04%
  • D) 8.33%

2. Tables and graphs

numerical chart question

If Heathrow Airport pledged in January to reduce cancelled flights by 80% by March, by how many cancelled flights have they failed to reach this target?

  • A) 4
  • B) 0
  • C) 14
  • D) 18

3. Conversions

numerical conversion question

2,000 CHF was used to purchase USD in Q2 and then sold in Q4. How much will the amount be worth in CHF?

  • A) 2,117.65
  • B) 2,098.03
  • C) 2,077.67
  • D) 1,981.48

Answers

1) May = 110 + 120 = 230 June = 90 + 110 = 200 230 - 200 = 30

30 / 230 x 100 = 13.04%, so the answer is C)

2) Step 1: Take the number of flights cancelled in January and calculate an 80% reduction:

30 × (1-0.8) = 6

Step 2: Subtract this figure from the March figure:

10 - 6 = 4, so the answer is A)

3) Step 1: Calculate how many USD you can buy with CHF 2,000 in Q2:

2,000 × 1.08 = USD 2,160

Step 2: Calculate how many CHF you can purchase with USD 2,160 in Q4:

2,160 ÷ 1.02 = CHF 2,117.65, so the answer is A)

Within two hours of practice I have improved my score from 50% correct to 88%.
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Are SHL numerical tests difficult?

The tests are designed to be challenging, as they act as a filter for employers who are looking to take only the best candidates forward. The good news is, if you’re applying for a job that requires you to take an SHL numerical test, you’re probably pretty adept with numbers already— so it’s just about ensuring you’ve put enough practice and preparation in before the test to sharpen your skills.

How are SHL numerical tests scored?

The tests are scored comparatively, which means your score will be compared to the scores of every other candidate who took the test. This is preferable to a benchmark pass rate or normative scoring, as it takes into account how hard the test was.

How long is an SHL numerical test?

The SHL numerical test usually comprises 18 questions, for which you’ll have between 17–25 minutes to answer. It’s important to check how long you have at the start, so you can give yourself a time allowance for each question.

Can you use a calculator?

The answer to this varies from test to test. As such it’s essential to find out before you start practising past tests, so you know whether you can use a calculator or not.

If you are allowed to use a calculator, it’s wise to familiarise yourself with the model you have and make sure you know how to get the best from all of the different functionalities.

Where can I practice numerical reasoning tests?

You can start with the numerical reasoning tests on this website, where there’s also plenty of tips and tricks from industry insiders, helpful blog posts and advice from people who have taken the tests previously.

How can I improve my numerical reasoning?

There really is nothing better than practising past tests. Doing so helps you to get quicker, familiarise yourself with the different questions, work out which areas you need to brush up on and ensures you enter the test with confidence that you can face what’s in front of you.

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SHL Style Numerical Reasoning Tests Tips

1Brush up on your numerical skills

You need to make sure you have a good grasp of fractions, ratios, percentages, averages and statistics. Build your confidence at analysing data presented in graphs and charts, as that’s what the majority of the questions will focus on. Our numerical reasoning test questions are a good place to start.

2Practice different numerical tests

Practicing is the most important thing you can do to prepare, but there are ways to make your practice more efficient. Don’t just rely on the questions on the SHL website, as these are easier than the ones you’ll see on the actual test. Our sample tests cover all of the kinds of questions you’re likely to see.

3Replicate the test environment

Take any mock test you do in exam conditions, so you prepare yourself mentally and get better at answering the questions quickly and accurately. This means a quiet working environment free from distractions, equipping yourself with the tools you’ll be allowed on the day, and most crucially — timing yourself.

4Work quickly but don’t rush

The most common mistakes are made because people don’t read the questions properly and miss key information. A good example of this is the different axes on the graphs — they’re often swapped around as a means of checking whether you’ve been paying attention.

5Use your time efficiently

If you’re running out of time, make an educated guess and come back to it if you have time in the end. You can maximize your chance of selecting the right answer by eliminating any you know to be wrong and trying to roughly arrive at an answer in your head, to help you better guess which answer may be correct.

Numerical Reasoning Video Tutorials

Data Interpretation

2 mins

Numerical Tests: A Guide

4 mins

SHL Tests: A Guide

5 mins

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Reviews of our Numerical Reasoning tests

What our customers say about our Numerical Reasoning tests

  • United Kingdom

    November 22, 2022

    Good

    Good range and variety of questions Maybe add a section next to the timer which suggests how much time you should spend on each question

  • United Kingdom

    November 22, 2022

    Sharpening of the mind!

    Certainly helped me review mathematical techniques in preparation and practise areas I otherwise wouldn't have

  • United Kingdom

    November 22, 2022

    Great range of questions

    Found it key to read the different labels on the graph, really helped my progress. Gave a range of different types of charts in different contexts.

  • Bangladesh

    November 21, 2022

    Analytical Ability

    I liked that the test balances the difficulties of the questions. However, it would be more efficient if each question contains a specific time limit.

  • South Africa

    November 21, 2022

    Good

    Graph descriptions are not obvious at the start, but becomes obvious by looking at the questions as you go along.

  • Puerto Rico

    November 21, 2022

    Pretty easy, but the timer makes it slightly stressful

    I liked that not all the questions were the same and that they introduced different graphs for each couple of questions, but sometimes the questions were made so that the process was almost the same for some of them' I don't know if that's the point. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the test.

  • United Kingdom

    November 19, 2022

    Very advanced and tidy website

    The smoothness of the website allows the user to see the values of the graphs very quickly and therefore they can make faster calculations. Great colours and fonts, clear questions yet challenging but overall it was a joy to partake in the tests.

  • South Africa

    November 18, 2022

    Be as fast and calculative as you can

    I like the fact that I was able to use a calculator and still be fast, although percentage calculations were difficult for me.

  • Nigeria

    November 18, 2022

    My numerical test

    The test was quite a challenge because you had to use your head for calculations and you had to keep track of time in order not to delay. It was also fun but time cautious

  • United Kingdom

    November 16, 2022

    Challenging questions

    The questions were good for keeping me on my toes and were similar to online assessment questions I've seen in the past.