Math Reasoning in the Workplace

Mathematics is utilized constantly in the workplace. Whether you are calculating the time you have left on your lunch break, evaluating the number of hours you have accumulated in the work week, or reconciling your hours to your pay stub, you must use math. Once your calculations are done, you usually have to make a decision based upon the information you have. Often, the most critical decisions to be made on the job must be made using some type of math. It is no wonder that basic math reasoning is at the top of the list of soft skills desired by employers.

Examples of tasks requiring basic math reasoning include: placing orders for supplies, following budgets, and estimating measurements.

1. You are a cashier at a grocery store. Your customer, David, buys a pound of bacon for \$1.39, one dozen eggs for \$1.29, and a pound of coffee for \$2.79. What is the sum total of his purchases? If David gives you \$10.00 what is his correct change?

2. Wanda baked 168 cookies, packaged them in boxes of 12, and sold each box for \$1.20. How many boxes of 12 can be packaged if there are 168 cookies? What was the total amount of money that Wanda made for all of the boxes sold?

3. Mary charges \$8.50 per hour to clean a house. If she works 25 hours, how much does she earn in one week?

4. William earned \$9.50 an hour. He worked 40 hours one week and received a bonus of \$75.00. How much did he earn that week?

5. Each truck from Jones Removal Company can haul 500 pounds of trash at a time. On Wednesday the company has jobs to remove 1,500 pounds of trash from one site, 500 from another site, and 2,500 from a third site. How many total pounds of trash will be moved by Jones Company that day? How many trips will it take for the Jones Company to remove all of the trash?

6. Mr. Ortiz has to successfully interview 90% of his assigned households. He was assigned 500 households. He has interviewed 430 households so far. Has he met his goal?

7. Your new cell phone battery needs to be charged for 3 hours and 45 minutes before using it. If you plug the battery into the charger at 8:20 a.m., you should wait till what time before using it?

8. A customer wants to purchase new carpet, her bedroom measures 12 ft by 15 ft. How many sq. yards does the customer need to buy?

9. Danielle got to work at 9:30 in the morning. She worked a six hour day plus she took at 45 min lunch break. What time did Danielle leave work if she worked 6 hours and took a 45 min lunch?

10. Mike works as a waiter in a restaurant. A couple comes in to have dinner and spend \$45.00. Mike needs to add on 6% sales tax to the couple’s bill. Mike also knows they will tip 15% on the original bill. Including the tax and tip, what is the total amount of money the couple should give Mike?