Deloitte inducting into sponsored education
Deloitte is launching another programme sponsoring talented people who want to further their studies. The financial services firm sponsors three main programmes which cater for either full-time employees, full-time students, or employees who are studying part-time.
Deloitte runs these programmes across its global network. In Malta, they have been running for around eight years, starting with a course for ACCA students. It was also extended officially to ACA students last year. There are currently around 26 in the second intake of the ACA programme, mostly graduates.
The manager looking after the programme in Malta, Cathy Peric, said the idea goes well beyond a financial sponsorship.
“Each student has a ‘buddy’ who is there to mentor them and relate the study experience to real situations through work experience. This makes a tremendous difference to their approach – and to their academic results,” she said.
“The standard pass rate is around 50-57 per cent while that for the Deloitte students was an impressive 85 per cent.”
Most of the programmes bind the students to a number of years working with Deloitte upon completion, depending on the programme selected – which, of course, could also be taken as guaranteed employment! There is also the opportunity to get a short-term internship in other Deloitte offices around the world.
Students are screened and tested for their numerical skills, apart from being interviewed. It says a lot about the level of importance given to the programme that Deloitte’s directors try to attend the interviews in person.
Deloitte offers these programmes as part of its corporate social responsibility but it clearly has an agenda, albeit a benevolent one. It wants to recruit the best and the brightest – not an easy task when these are being targeted by rival firms, and even rival economic sectors.
“We are looking for quality and not for numbers,” manager Caroline Cassar Reynaud said.
“This is all part of our ongoing quest for excellence, which does not stop with recruitment. There are continuous learning programmes across the organisation.”
Taking them on when so young – usually the second year of their degree – has its pros and cons: they are still open to the idea of different corporate cultures – but they are also faced with numerous other opportunities in their future. Clearly recruiting them is the first challenge; the second is retaining them.
Deloitte currently has 250 employees – and counting – and retains them through good human resource principles, aimed at families and a work-life balance.
“It is a very collaborative atmosphere, not at all a hierarchical one,” Ms Cassar Reynaud said.
Deloitte will be inducting around 25-30 people into the programmes this year, around 20 of whom will be students.
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