My tips and advice for a career at EY

I am a Student Recruitment Advisor and manage EY’s relationship with the Universities of Manchester, Lancaster, Liverpool, Hull and York as well as engagement with Schools/Colleges in the North West region. I am responsible for campus activity for recruitment across all service lines for summer internships, industrial year placements, school leavers programmes and graduate schemes. We welcome applications from students of all disciplines and stages of their University degree.

My advice for students looking to join EY is to get to know us as early on in your career as possible (be that at College or University).  EY is a fantastic place to work and it’s important that you understand our culture and our values so that you can figure out if it will be the sort of place that you will enjoy being part of. You can do this by doing research online on our website or following us on social media but perhaps the best way is, to chat with our EY people at events at your university. This way you will gain an authentic insight into life at EY. Following that, try to demystify our service lines (this means more research!) and see which one excites you the most and any roles within that, that you’d like to apply to for. Many students comment that this is the easy part and what they really struggle with is the interview.

The Interview- how to overcome nerves and make the most of it

If you reach this stage, you’ve done an excellent job so far and this is your opportunity to learn more about us and to impress one of our interviewers. Aside from not knowing your strengths and being able to effectively demonstrate why these would be valuable to EY (more info here), two of the main pitfalls I commonly see students fall into, is either being too nervous or not being willing/able to expand on the question we’re asking.

1)      Nerves: Being anxious is completely normal and as the great Beyonce says, “if you’re nervous about something, it means you really want it”- so channel that energy into achieving your desired outcome. Don’t forget that EY commits a lot of resource to  recruiting the right people into our roles therefore we really want you to secure a place with us. Keep your mindset positive as it will help the real you and your natural abilities to shine through, and it will put you at ease enough to understand what we’re really asking for in our question so you can bring relevant and insightful examples to the conversation. Also, PRACTICE! Use your Careers Service to sit through as many mock interviews as possible to become comfortable with the situation and fully prepared.

2)      Expanding on the question asked: I have conducted countless interviews which is something that students seem to forget. The interviewer is a real, human person and they are looking for a real, human interaction, we certainly don’t want staged and uber-rehearsed, stilted answers, we’re looking for a two-way flowing dialogue. With the better interviews I’ve done, students comment  that they wondered when the real thing was going to begin as it felt like such a natural and enjoyable conversation. The trick behind this is to make it interesting and always use an example to evidence your answer, bringing as wide a range of your background as possible into play (academics, sport, work, volunteering etc). For more information about how to structure this, see my colleague Amy Moody’s article on the tried and tested STAR formula.

We’re looking for people who are passionate about EY and the role they’re applying for so make sure you demonstrate that throughout the recruitment process – try to enjoy it and good luck!

Alex Booth
  • Alex Booth

About the author

I studied International Management and Spanish at the University of Bath and spent a year working at a marketing agency in Barcelona, Spain. After graduating I joined a small boutique consultancy and worked on assignments across a range sectors, functions and level while studying with the Chartered Institute of Marketing to attain a Professional Certificate in Marketing. I then joined Manchester Business School as a Careers and External Relations Consultant, aiding 200 full-time international MBA and 1,000 MSc students. I joined EY in the Manchester office in February 2016.