Press release

20 Oct 2021 London, GB

EY strengthens UK business with over 1,000 student hires this year

EY strengthens UK business with over 1,000 student hires this year

Press contact
Rupa Sudra Bharadva

Manager, Media Relations, Ernst & Young LLP

Communications professional for EY UK. Mum of two, works part-time. Passionate about supporting women in business.

  • EY has hired 909 graduates and 179 apprentices on its student programmes 
  • 46% of the student intake are women, 38% are from ethnic minorities, and 4% are Black

London, Wednesday 20 October 2021: EY has welcomed a total of 1,088 graduates and apprentices into its UK offices this year, reinforcing its commitment to invest in and nurture early talent. This compares to 1,048 graduates and apprentices hired in 2020.

Forty four percent of this year’s cohort of 909 graduates and 179 apprentices will be based outside of London in EY’s regional offices. Bristol, Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle and Reading have seen a particularly strong intake as the firm continues to invest in its regional business. Of the new joiners, 46% are women, 38% are from an ethnic minority, and 4% are Black.

Hywel Ball, EY’s UK Chair, says: “I am delighted to welcome our student recruits as they begin their career with EY. At a time when many students have been facing a challenging jobs market, we believe that it is important for our communities and the long-term success of our business to keep recruiting. That is why, we have continued to recruit throughout the pandemic, and honoured all conditional offers we made prior to A-Level results for the second year running. 

“Almost half of this year’s students will be based outside of London, which represents a significant investment in our regional business and our commitment to developing diverse talent from across the UK.”

EY adapted its student recruitment programmes over the last 18 months to ensure that graduates and apprentices were still able to receive meaningful client experiences and study for their professional qualifications while working virtually. With restrictions now easing, students will complete their induction training virtually before adopting a hybrid working arrangement from mid-Autumn onwards, where they will split their time between office, client site and remote working.

To ensure students receive the right level of support, EY has introduced more one-to-one touchpoints for students with their line managers and coaches and will be arming students with tools and tips on working in a virtual world. There will also be both virtual and in-person networking sessions and more peer support groups. 

Diverse early talent

EY is committed to attracting and retaining diverse talent and last year set out a series of new anti-racism commitments. This included a commitment to offering at least 30% of EY’s work experience places to Black young people for the next five years. In addition, EY has increased the number of places on its ‘Discover EY Black Heritage in Business’ programme for first year undergraduates by 72%. The two-day virtual programme gives Black students the opportunity to learn more about EY, gain career advice and network. EY’s Race and Ethnicity employee network is also now offering a mentoring scheme to support early talent as students begin their career at EY. 

EY continues to support employability skills through the Maths Mindset programme, which provides numeracy learning and coaching support to students. The firm has invested in a new Cappfinity platform, which provides students with access to practice tests to support with the application process. These initiatives will help to level the playing field for students who don’t have access to a dedicated careers service.

EY has also recently announced the launch of a Neuro-Diverse Centre of Excellence in the UK, which has set an ambition to hire 150 neurodivergent individuals over the next three years, who will work within EY’s integrated client teams. The programme is open to both graduates and experienced hires, and is currently recruiting for its first intake of 5 individuals in Manchester.

Justine Campbell, EY’s UK&I Managing Partner for Talent, says: “As one of the UK’s largest student recruiters, it’s important that we are accessible to the broadest range of talent. That’s why we are focused on providing a range of entry routes into the profession, from the EY Foundation’s Smart Futures programme through to our school leaver and graduate programmes. We have set ourselves ambitious diversity targets and are taking action to tailor our recruitment activities to attract and retain a diverse pool of talent.

“We know that many of our early talent will become our future leaders so it’s vital that we equip them with the skills and hands-on experience needed to get their EY career off to a flying start.”