What we are starting to see is a transition in finance education. Relationships are being built between business schools, as well as further qualification establishments such as CIMA and potential employers. In my own experience with Johnson and Johnson, with previous and future recruitment there was a benefit in having the relationship, as we saw a trend of choosing particular universities, one of which was Northumbria. Relationships with employees may well be the future and catalysts in integrating academics and the workplace.
A key innovation is prevalent in campus recruitment. Goldman and Sachs invest substantial amounts of capital into graduate recruitment, however I don’t think enough is being done by organisations. At the moment only top universities are being targeted for on campus recruitment by the financial institutions and I believe more needs be to done to build a rapport and encourage organisations in invest in more universities and increase the diversification of recruitment.
Students invest in their future by continuing education and paying fees for tuition. Recent developments have seen tuition fees increase threefold, leaving students with higher debts than ever seen before. There are a few organisations that offer sponsorship schemes, such as National Grid and GlaxoSmithKline that are willing to pay off your fees should you be successful in the recruitment process. This is encouraging to see as it is giving students as incentive and purpose to continue through education.
I return to my first and most important point - relationship building. I believe we will see financial organisations take a greater role in the development of students, through sponsorships, internships and other methods of recruitment. Graduate recruiters are seeking students that can demonstrate key competencies well, but also what they specifically know about the industry and the role. This is where university syllabus can make a greater impact through more relevant teaching.
I also believe organisations will make a greater contribution to sponsorships in students but also business schools to build on connections. Through the “financial markets of the future” conference alone, we are witnessing developments whereby a platform is being set to bring together talented students and major players in the finance industry. Allowing business schools and financial institutions to work together in the development of students will most definitely be the future of the financial educational system.
Josh Gordon is the President of the Accounting and Finance Society at Northumbria University