EY Jobs | Degree no longer a minimum requirement for jobs

EY Jobs | Degree no longer a minimum requirement for jobs

Before we start, let’s take a quick poll:

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Did you know…?

The minimum requirement for most jobs in Africa and abroad, especially at a multinational company, is some tertiary qualification from a recognized tertiary institution.

Whilst some argue that the completion of a tertiary qualification does not necessarily depict that an individual is unable to perform a job (not to mention the fact that often what you get taught at university in theory, is worlds apart from what you apply in the world of work); which is why a degree as a minimum requirement is being looked at creatively.

On the other hand, when recruiting a new individual; if experienced, the potential employer or Recruiter looks at your employment history i.e. your previous work experience. If you are a recent graduate, the potential employer or Recruiter doesn’t have that “employment history” per se and would instead look at other factors that would help determine your work ethic and suitability for a particular role such as after school extramural activities 9academic and otherwise), part-time jobs during your time studying, internships and job shadowing assignments that you may have done.

It all depends on the level that you are recruiting at.

Well, EY is revolutionising the job market…

EY, a “big 4” audit firm, previously known as Ernst and Young, is looking at alternative methods of attracting talented individuals who do not have a tertiary qualification. EY UK currently has one of the biggest graduate recruitment programs. With 200 graduate-level posts to fill each year, EY is the 5th biggest recruiter of graduates in the UK.

Based on the premise that they have found “no evidence” that success at university was correlated with achievement in professional qualifications; they are moving towards removing the minimum entry requirement to candidates holding a degree only.

More about EY’s study

A study published by the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission in June found that intelligent working-class applicants were “systematically locked out” of jobs at leading accountancy firms. After the study was published, EY did some investigating of their own.

EY conducted an internal research study of over 400 graduates and found that screening students based on academic performance alone was too blunt an approach to recruitment.


The results of EY’s study

  1. What it did not find: The study found no evidence to conclude that previous success in higher education correlated with future success in subsequent professional qualifications undertaken.
  2. What it found: The research found a positive correlation between certain strengths which could be assessed and success in professional qualifications.

How will EY measure suitability for a job?

Without the degree requirements, EY will use numerical tests and online “strength” assessments to assess the potential of applicants.

This would “open up opportunities for talented individuals regardless of their background and provide greater access to the profession”, Maggie Stilwell, EY’s managing partner for talent, reportedly said.

“Academic qualifications will still be taken into account and indeed remain an important consideration when assessing candidates as a whole, but will no longer act as a barrier to getting a foot in the door, she said.

The reason for EY’s change

The reason why they are opting to change their policies on governing entrance requirements, according to Maggie Stilwell, is to create an environment that is a fair for all candidates, giving every applicant the opportunity to prove their abilities.

EY UK’s Recruitment Leader, Dan Richards, said that the company wanted to attract “the brightest and most talented individuals” and does not want to overlook any potential talent in the market. He said that in implementing the changes, the company hopes to access the widest and deepest possible talent pools and give every candidate the opportunity to demonstrate their strengths and their potential in our selection process.”

EY jobs | When will these changes come into effect?

The changes will be enforced for EY’s 2016 recruitment programs, opening applications on 3 August 2015.


Question for you: Is EY doing the right thing by changing their recruitment policies?

Do you like to voice your opinion? Visit our ,,Africa Universities website, to discuss various topics with us. We have a forum for:

– Graduates

– Experienced Workers

– School-goers

– University Students

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