National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC)


What is the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC)?

The National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC) is an assessment-based credential that helps job seekers prepare for and obtain employment. This certificate verifies foundational workforce skills needed for success and can be used across industries to improve the skills and capabilities of their workforce. By completing this assessment and obtaining the NCRC, job seekers can close the skills gap, improve their workforce development skills, and obtain employment across industries. In order to earn the NCRC, three WorkKeys Assessments in Applied Math, Workplace Documents, and Graphic Literacy must be completed.

These assessments measure a range of important workforce development skills, including the ability to:

  • Complete basic mathematic operations pertinent to the workplace
  • Read and comprehend documents frequently found in the workplace
  • Find data presented in common workplace graphics
  • Set up and explain multipart work-related math equations
  • Determine the importance of written information to work-related responsibilities
  • Apply data derived from graphics to work-related problems


Benefits of the NCRC

  • Job Seekers: A valuable work skills credential with the potential to advance career outcomes
  • Employers: A reliable indicator that, in combination with other selection tools, can improve hiring, training, or promotion decisions
  • Students: A credential that helps students succeed in a variety of career pathways
  • Workforce developers: A tool that helps displaced workers reenter the job market
  • Economic developers: Indication of a skilled workforce that helps attract business and industry to states and local communities
  • Industry Associations: A foundation for business and occupation-specific stackable credentials
  • Policymakers and legislators: A component of policy and legislative resolutions to the nation’s economic and educational challenges
NCRC badgesNEW! NCRC® earners can now highlight their essential workplace knowledge, skills, and achievements via digital credentials. ACT® has partnered with Credly to award Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze WorkKeys® NCRC® earners with digital badges. This is an opt-in additional service, allowing you to easily share your achievement to LinkedIn and other online platforms. There is no fee for this new service—only added benefits. Learn more on the NCRC website.


Four Levels of Proficiency

The NCRC is awarded at four levels, based on the scores achieved on the component assessments.

  • Platinum: Scores of Level 6 or higher on all three exams
  • Gold: Scores of Level 5 or higher on all three exams
  • Silver: Scores of Level 4 or higher on all three exams
  • Bronze: Scores of Level 3 or higher on all three exams

The NCRC levels correspond to the skills requirements of ACT-profiled jobs in the ACT JobPro Database:   

  • Platinum: Indicates the skills required for approximately 99% of profiled jobs
  • Gold: Indicates the skills required for approximately 93% of profiled jobs
  • Silver: Indicates the skills required for approximately 69% of profiled jobs
  • Bronze: Indicates the skills required for approximately 17% of profiled jobs

How to Register to take the NCRC Exam

  1. Complete the appointment request form, located at CSM Testing center webpage for desired testing center location.
  2. Register for the test.

NCRC Testing Information

  • Appointment is required to take NCRC exam. Visit the Testing Center webpage to schedule appointment at desired CSM testing center location.
  • Must show a valid Photo ID like Driver’s License, state issued ID Card, or Passport for check-in.

NCRC Test Prep Information

You can find sample questions as well as information and resources to help prepare you for the exam at the following site:

Obtain Your Scores

If you need to obtain your NCRC Scores, please access


Join the movement! The ACT® WorkKeys® National Career Readiness Certificate® (ACT® WorkKeys® NCRC®) is a vital component of the region’s Work Ready Community (WRC) designation. If you are an employer who would like more information, visit
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