Am looking to make the jump from education to industry.
Have got a meeting later today and just recieved an Email saying they might give me a test.
Feel quite competent on the software but slightly worried things are diffrent in indusrty to education and i might have some skills gaps.
has anyone got a test or can give me a heads up on what might be on it.
I only had one place actually test me, for a contract job, which I though strange. Me, if I'm hiring a CAD guy, i want to see his skillset.
My advice to you: If you have a particular config.pro file with mapkeys, bring it on a jump drive. I made the mistake of not doing that (actually, bringing a CD, it was before jump drives). If you use mapkeys a lot, or exclusively, as I do, then you kind of flounder trying to remember where in the stupid new ribbon they put the commands, and it's worse because you're under pressure.
It's a difficult thing to test, so it's doubtful there is any meaningful way to prep. Bring some printed pictures of work you've done and be ready to explain how you started and what steps you took to get there.
I would not expect a company to allow any medium to touch a computer - no jump drive, no CD, nada. Even if they believe you are a good person, which is why they invited you in, there's only risk to them and no benefit to possible exposure to malware that could have been loaded without your knowledge. Should they have anti-virus in place and all that? Sure. But you can't catch what you don't contact.
On the general topic of training and skills evaluations:
It would be nice if PTC supplied an end-point list and end-point tracking. An end-point is a place where the software has enough information to perform a task. Since it is the user who is supplying the required information, if you know the end-points, you know all the tasks you can get the software to perform. While the combinations of tasks is infinite, at least as far as humans are concerned, the number of tasks is fixed.
If you had a list of end-points, you can verify whether or not you know enough about the information requirements to get to them and have the software function. If PTC tracked end-point accomplishment, then they could dynamically report on what you successfully know vs what you either don't know or haven't tried. I suppose the software could differentiate between failed attempts and not visiting an endpoint.
Imagine you are asked if you know how to use a scientific calculator.
Each function button is an end-point and it's pretty easy to take each button one at a time and determine if you know about what it does and what you have to put into the calculator before pressing it. With tracking, one might find that SIN() gets used a lot, but COSH(), not ever. Then you could more easily determine what you were good at and whether there were things you should know. If it also tracked the number of times the result was an error - ASIN(5), for example, it could further tell when unacceptable conditions were present at the time the function was called.
This won't prove that you're a mathematician or engineer, but if there are functions that mathematicians and engineers use a lot and you match or exceed those uses then it's possible you know something. The inverse conclusion is also true, but it gives concrete support to proceed.
I think it depends highly on the industry you are going into and what position (engineer, designer, drafter, analysis, etc. or some combination of the above) and what level. Injection molding, sheetmetal, metal fab, tooling design, welding, carbon fiber composites, plastics, consumer products, aerospace, etc. etc. There are so many facets to design and engineering that everyone here could talk all day long.
That being said, there is some commonality between them all and most tests I've seen have to do with discovering bad habits and problem solving. Do you make unnecessary and dangerous assembly references, etc. Do you bury features inside others i.e. make a hole only to cover it back up later. In drawings, do you create dimensions on the drawing or use the feature driven dimensions? If your position will be creating drawings, there may be some basic GD&T or terminology as well as how well you dimension the part...duplicate dimensions, when to use ordinate dimensions, that kind of stuff. For FEA they could ask you to model up a scenario and see you constrain and load a part, make use of symmetry, or make use of idealizations. They may want to see how you solve a problem....something new and unexpected.
If you've made it far enough to be face to face with them, you are doing very well. Relax and keep an open mind. And remember that nobody knows everything (and they know that) so one of the most important things to remember is where to look for the answers when you don't have them. Keep it to a minimum as much as possible but tell them of this forum, text references, peers, help documents, coworkers, etc. of where to turn to when you don't have the answer. And as others have said, having as much of a portfolio as you can will help considerably.
The company could easily scan any jump drive files prior to letting you upload them. In my case, there wasn't any issues at all and it was a company that did military machinings.
While personal experience varies, and this is the reason I mentioned it, many of the companies I've been to don't allow a jump drive in the building, much less to be plugged in.
My suggestion still is - don't count on it.
If you bring it with you and they don't allow it at least it shows that you are more than just a novice. It's like a chef showing up for a cooking audtion and not have his knives with him. More impressive if you are prepared and they don't allow it than the otherway around.
Nothing like a good old crutch to lay blame on! I've done military, nuclear, and public/consumer stuff and it's been a mixed bag. As a contractor or candidate they can be even tighter.