Sixth Former Jack Crane has secured his dream job as a higher apprenticeship management consultant with PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the most prestigious professional services firms in the country (and the world). The company offers a range of training routes for school leavers and Jack had to undergo an extensive selection process comprising online tests, an assessment day and face-to-face interviews.
‘During one 20 minute test you had to read 12 emails and answer questions based on who to respond to first and what to say to each, then draft a response. However, for me, the final interview was the most nerve-racking part.’ he said.
Jack was presented with the HSBC Business Student of the Year at this year’s Prize Giving for his work with the Young Enterprise Scheme. He was managing director of Sasindo, a company that manufactured and sold candles at trade fairs and events. The company picked up two business awards and Jack credits his experience on the scheme for his successful interview.
‘I would really recommend taking part in the Young Enterprise scheme as it gives you a wealth of information to draw upon so you can talk about anything and everything to do with it. Work experience was valuable for the same reason. Throughout the recruitment process you have many chances to demonstrate, not only your academic ability, but also your teamwork skills as you do a group exercise with four or five others who are all competing for the same job! Consultants are invited to visit a company to evaluate it and suggest improvements. These might involve cutting costs, improving the process, looking at their systems and coming up with ways to make their business more thriving and effective. When I was offered the job they said it was my commercial knowledge that clinched it and they were also impressed with my financial awareness.'
Careers adviser Mr Primmett said: ‘The application process for these blue-chip companies is extremely rigorous, and from my experience, the majority of applicants will struggle even to satisfactorily complete the application form, because unless they have undertaken substantial work experience they will be literally unable to demonstrate they have the skills demanded by these top employers. Work experience of any kind equips students with the ‘experiences’ to draw on during interview and clearly PricewaterhouseCoopers have recognised these crucial skills in Jack, along with his obvious ability, commitment and maturity.’
Jack is studying business studies, history and English language A levels and his two-year consultancy apprenticeship is dependent on grades. He said: ‘I will be working towards a Certificate in Management Consulting Practice and a Level 4 Diploma in Consulting Practice. The offices that I will work in, More London Riverside, are amazing and in the heart of the business district next to Tower Bridge. It really is a great opportunity and I cannot wait to get started.’