Ernst & Young Looks Beyond Universities and GPAs in Hiring

While GPAs and alma maters have long been used to filter potential job candidates, meta-analysis after meta-analysis has found no evidence of college success as a predictor of career achievement. Finding a similar lack of evidence in their own internal research, UK-based accountancy firm Ernst & Young (EY) has removed the requirement of the 2:1 degree (the rough equivalent of a 3.2 GPA) when recruiting. EY hopes that changing their hiring process will extend their reach to more talented individuals. Though they still take account academic performance, they won’t be using it as a strict cut-off, according to Maggie Stilwell, EY’s managing partner for talent. This was, in Stilwell’s words, “too blunt an approach to recruitment.” They will be using online assessments to judge the potential of candidates.

Takeaway: If your organization uses college performance as part of its recruiting process, it may be worth rethinking how your organization hires and evaluates job candidates—otherwise, you might be missing out on top talent.


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