Deloitte is one of the ‘Big Four’ financial services companies, alongside EY, KPMG and PwC. With such prestige, the company is also one of the most sought-after places for graduate job-seekers.
Thousands of candidates, fresh out of university, will be vying for a limited number of positions. The selection process is comprehensive and competitive, so there’s little room for error.
For that reason, it’s vital that you do your homework. And your homework begins with reading an article like this, so you’re off to a good start.
Before you can properly prepare for what’s to come, you will need to be familiar with the process and have a solid idea of what’s in store. Read on...
Before starting the application process, know the minimum qualification requirements.
Note that the exact requirements can vary depending on the programme, so do double-check this on the job advert itself.
The basic, general requirements are as follows:
For a fuller list of requirements, visit Deloitte’s website.
Deloitte also states that while these requirements do apply the vast majority of the time, they will occasionally adjust them to reflect extenuating circumstances.
So, if you have a particularly good reason for why you do not have one or more of the entry requirements, Deloitte welcomes you to apply and will take your circumstances into account.
As with most job applications, this one starts with an application form. Gather all your important documents, details and qualifications and fill it out.
First, you select the programme you want to apply for. Choose from:
Next, you can read a little about the overview of the programme, the entry requirements and the deadline.
Then, you select your career path. For the graduate programme, these are:
Within some of these, you may also be able to select more specific roles that are currently being recruited for.
Once you have selected your career path, you will be able to read more detailed information on the programme, including requirements, the available location, an overview, what you will do during the programme and Deloitte’s values.
If you’re satisfied with everything (check the available locations in particular, if you have a specific place in mind), then you can click ‘Apply Now’ and begin the form.
Fill in your name, the programme and career path you’re applying for, and select a location.
For most, this is just a simple checkbox to say that you have all the minimum requirements. However, it is also here where you must declare if you have extenuating circumstances that have prevented you from attaining the required grades.
Likewise, this is also where you fill in some other important legal requirements, such as whether you’ve worked for or applied to Deloitte before, whether (and on what grounds – citizenship, visa, etc.) you are eligible to work at the location you’re applying for, and whether you have anything on your legal record that you have to declare.
As part of Deloitte’s diversity and social mobility initiatives and statistics, you are asked to provide some more personal information here.
This information is confidential and does not impact the recruitment process. For each question, you may answer with ‘Prefer not to say’.
You are asked about the following:
For some programmes and locations, you may have additional questions. For Belfast applications, for example, you will be asked whether you are a part of either the Protestant or Roman Catholic communities.
Finally, you will be asked whether you are happy for this data to be shared in a way that is not personally identifiable.
And that’s it. With that filled in, you can then review your application and send it off.
Once you’ve submitted your application form, you’re automatically advanced to Stage 2.
The second stage of the process is essentially a situational judgement test.
It’s not a test with right and wrong answers, per se, like numerical or verbal reasoning tests. Instead, you will be given a typical workplace scenario and asked how you would respond to the situation.
You complete this test online, so ensure you have a secure internet connection.
The test itself is untimed but it must be completed in a single sitting. Deloitte says that it should take around 40 minutes, so make sure you have about an hour set aside.
This is a ranked preference multiple-choice test. You need to rank the possible answers in order of preference, from your most likely action to your least likely.
Crucially, this format means that you aren’t just selecting a single response to put forward but, rather, you’re ranking each one. This will require more time and more thought.
Because this is not a test with right or wrong answers, it can be a bit harder to prepare. Deloitte will be assessing your personality and whether you’ll be a good fit for the role.
A good way to prepare is to figure out what Deloitte values in an employee. Read up all you can about the company’s internal structures, values and culture, to see what they might be looking for.
Of course, it’s important that you are true to yourself as well, but there is flexibility in terms of what you focus on or emphasise.
For starters, Deloitte has published the values that ‘describe the core principles that distinguish the Deloitte culture’. In brief, these are:
Have these written down nearby and refer to them if you’re struggling to rank a set of options.
To help you narrow things down, consider which answers most embody Deloitte values, and which answers potentially go contrary to one or more of its values.
Within a few days, you should hear whether or not you have been successful in stage 2.
That does not mean that you are automatically advanced to stage 3. Rather, if you’re successful at stage 2, Deloitte will consider your full application and get back to you within about 2 weeks, to let you know if you are advancing to the third stage or not.
Succeed or fail at this stage, you will receive a feedback report that essentially tells you your personality results from the immersive online assessment.
It will let you know your strengths and weaknesses, and how you performed according to certain key traits.
Here you will need to answer questions in written, multiple-choice and video format. It is called a ‘job simulation’ because the questions will relate to the work you might undertake at Deloitte.
Before you begin, you may be asked to select a specific service line, which can affect the types of questions you are asked.
This section is not timed but you should be able to complete it in about 45 minutes. There should be around 18 questions in three sections. Around five to seven of those questions will be video recorded.
While the tasks you face and the order you face them can change depending on your service line and intake group, you’re likely to come across some of the following questions:
You’re likely to be asked tough numerical aptitude questions. These questions test your ability to interpret and manipulate numerical information, and come to a conclusion.
Typically, the actual questions will not be that difficult in isolation – addition, multiplication, division, percentages and so on – but working out which operations to use to get to the desired answer can be tougher.
Plus, some candidates have noted that there is a possibility of being asked to use factorials – and other more advanced operations – in some of the more difficult questions.
Similarly to the last stage, you might also face situational judgement questions: those that relate to how you would respond to particular work-based scenarios.
The key with these questions is that there’s no right or wrong answer so, as with the last stage, keep Deloitte’s values in mind and you won’t go far wrong.
Verbal reasoning questions are to do with interpreting and analysing written information, and using it to come to a conclusion.
These can be done in different ways. A common format is for the information to be given and then a statement is made about the information. You have to decide whether that statement is true, false, or if there is not enough information to say either way.
You can practice verbal reasoning tests here.
A large part of this section works as a pre-recorded interview, meaning that there is no live person on the other end. The questions are pre-set by Deloitte and your answers are recorded and then assessed later.
You will be given around five to seven questions. For each of these, you will have a set number of minutes to record your answer.
These questions can be on more or less anything to do with you as a candidate, though they are largely competency-based.
Some examples of questions you might encounter include:
Other questions in this section might be case-study-based, depending on your service line.
Here, the questions might ask you to figure out where the errors are in a report. This might require some more technical knowledge, so be prepared for that.
Essentially, you will be given a fictional client scenario and asked to come up with a solution to a problem. Be ready to think on your feet.
Sometimes the case study question is written instead, and you will simply need to write an analysis of the case study and answer a question on it.
Video interviews can feel very unnatural. That’s why it’s vital that you practice recording yourself giving answers into a camera.
Another task that some candidates have reported being given is an email task.
This simply entails writing an email to a client, colleague or manager about a day-to-day task.
For instance, you may have to write an email to a colleague politely explaining why you are unable to meet a deadline.
At the end of the job simulation, Deloitte says you should receive an email within 3 weeks containing the result of your assessment, alongside some feedback.
If you have made it this far then congratulations are in order. Very few candidates advance to the final stage.
Deloitte says that in this stage you will face an interview with a senior person from your chosen service line and a presentation.
The final stage assessment will be scheduled for around 1 to 2 hours.
About a week before your scheduled time, you will receive further information about the final assessment. You will be sent a topic on which you must prepare a 5-minute presentation.
This presentation will be given at the beginning of the interview. You will need to give your presentation and then answer some questions on it.
The presentation topic could be on a variety of things but it tends to be quite broad, leaving you to narrow it down to a succinct 5 minutes. For instance, one candidate was asked to speak on globalisation.
Five minutes is very little time for such a broad topic, so your first job is to figure out what you want to talk about.
Research the current debates and news relating to your topic. When you find one or two points that interest you, see how they might relate to Deloitte and the industries your service line is related to.
Use your 5 minutes to briefly sum up the most interesting and pertinent aspects of the topic area, how they relate to Deloitte, and then what challenges and opportunities those aspects present to the firm.
Next, the presentation will segue into the interview itself.
Exactly how the interview will go depends very much on the particular interviewer. While many will follow familiar patterns, some like to go off-piste to see how you deal with the unexpected and types of questions you likely haven’t prepared for.
Broadly speaking though, this interview will be competency-based.
Potential questions include:
In general, candidates mostly report facing ‘standard’ competency questions, so some general preparation should do you well.
Take a look at our article on Deloitte interview questions for more detail.
They’ll talk about why you want to work at Deloitte, why that particular service line, and what about your past experiences makes you a good candidate.
Remember to use the STAR technique to answer interview questions like these. It’s a formula to help you succinctly get across all the relevant points, along with tangible evidence.
STAR stands for:
Some candidates have remarked that their interview was structured according to Deloitte’s values – the same ones mentioned earlier.
This structure entails four sections based on the values, with about 3 to 4 questions per section. Even more reason to get to know Deloitte’s values as well as you can and to factor them into your answers.
Once you’ve done the interview, that’s it. You can rest and try to relax for now as you wait for the final verdict.
The time you’ll need to wait varies a lot depending on how many more applicants they need to see, their scheduling, how difficult the decision is and so on.
But you should be looking at approximately 1 to 3 weeks, with detailed feedback regardless of whether you’re selected for the position or not.
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