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EY 101: your top questions about the graduate application process answered

The application process for EY contains five key steps: the online application, online assessments, job simulation test, the virtual experience day and a final interview. We asked Megan Brook, a recruitment adviser at EY, to answer five top FAQs about the process.

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The online application asks me to select the service line I’m applying for. How do I choose the right one for me?

EY can help you in three ways when it comes to selecting your service line. First, before you select one, make sure to take the EY and You quiz. It’s designed to help you see if you and EY are a good match for each other. If you are, then EY pathfinder, an interactive quiz, has been created to help you choose a service line – your answers will determine if a particular one would suit you. You can then read in detail about the different service lines available. The results don’t mean you have to apply to that particular area, of course, but should support you with making an informed choice. If you’ve still got questions, you can chat with EY representatives on the EY discussion platform, where you can ask about any aspect of the application process and the different graduate streams.

I’m nervous about the numerical reasoning test (NRT). What should I do?

This is the test that many applicants, especially those without numerical backgrounds, find a bit scary – however it doesn’t need to be! My best advice is to practise online tests, such as those on JobMi as much as possible, to build your confidence. There’s no limit on how many practice ones you can do, which is a bonus. Speed and accuracy are important when completing the NRT, but the key, because it is a timed assessment, is to find the right balance between rushing through it and potentially getting more incorrect answers, and being too methodical and not attempting enough. Practice should help you find this balance. Make sure you’re somewhere quiet without distractions before you start.

How does the job simulation test work?

If you pass the online assessments, you’ll move on to this next stage – the job simulation. There are 14 questions here, a mix of multiple choice, written and video responses, which aim to discover if you’re right for the programme you have chosen. It’s not timed but usually takes people about 45 minutes to get through. You will be presented with scenarios that are similar to real situations you’d find in the course of working at EY and asked how you would respond. Answer honestly, in a way that feels natural to you. When you’ve completed the test you will receive personalised feedback about the strengths you demonstrated and understand if you’ve been successful in moving on to the next stage.

What happens at the virtual EY experience day? 

After the job simulation you’ll be sent an email, which you’ll have 48 hours to respond to, and asked to select your time for your virtual experience day. Again, find somewhere quiet, with no distractions, to take part. You’ll be paired with an assessor online. They will present you with scenarios and ask you how you’d respond, to describe what your next step would be. For some scenarios you’ll be given a bit of time to prepare your answer. Again, the assessor will be looking to see if you’ve got the strengths EY is looking for. There are plenty of chances for you to ask questions too. Most candidates find this stage fun – in fact, it’s a good sign if you do as it probably shows that you and EY will be a good fit for each other.

What is the virtual EY interview?

This will be an interview with a senior representative from EY (perhaps a partner or a senior manager) who is working in the service line you’re applying to. They key theme here is motivation. They will be trying to find out if you’ll be a good fit both for the company and the for service line, and will want to find out what drew you to both: what has motivated you to apply to EY and work in, say, assurance, for example? You need to have done your research before this stage, and although we’re not looking for the finished article, you need to be able to talk about what interests you about that service line and demonstrate your commercial awareness (make sure you’ve read any recent EY news that relates to the role). Again, be yourself. It’s a good idea to practice online for this stage with a friend or family member, so you can get used to the virtual setting.

Please note this is not TARGETjobs content and written by the employer.

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