Don’t hire graduates, grow your own!


Graduates demand lower salaries than experienced hires; have the necessary knowledge, abundant potential and are easy to mould to suit your culture. These are the top reasons why employers recruit graduates. But in reality are we really able to tick all these boxes with the modern-day graduate?

Even if the answer is yes for some of you. I can guarantee that when it comes to graduate placements into core insurance jobs, you will not be able to simply tick the “Knowledge” box, because there isn’t a degree programme that produces “Insurance” graduates.

In my experience I have also observed; the privilege of University has added a bit of egotism in graduates and to this effect they have developed an attitude of “we know it all and I have been to University”. Some of them even believe that all front line jobs are below their dignity and they should be engaged in sophisticated jobs. The argument of “abundant potential” is now overshadowed by a false sense of pride that the graduate title inflicts onto their overall outlook. So is it really easy for employers to shape them to suit your culture with all these complexities? Add to the costly exercise of graduate recruitment and ask…

     ‘Do we continue to recruit for insurance jobs from the graduate pool or not?’

I would say “Not”. It’s time to break the status quo of traditional graduate hire and create a new model and Grow Your Own!

But how can an employer do this? “They can’t” was my first thought, but I was wrong. Why wait for Universities to create the degrees and graduates that you need? Work with them to create the talent that you want.

The voices of businesses have the power to completely change the landscape of University Education by encouraging them to collaborate and create meaningful, mutually beneficial programmes.  As a result of engaging with Universities in this way, today (along with my team), I have developed the first ever insurance specific degree programme (BA Hons Insurance, “A degree with a difference!”).

This innovative model sets itself apart from the traditional university route by providing students with a salary, three years relevant work experience, a weekly day release to university and the opportunity to be ‘debt free’.

With the tuition fee set at £9000 for three years, this programme is compelled to shame the £9000 per year tuition fee of the traditional degree courses. The “Low Cost” tuition fee is one of the main attractions of BA (Hons) Insurance.


3 Reasons why this model will be a game changer [Businesses’ Perspective] 


1. The degree programme provides the business with a faster return on investment Employees are insurance trained and productive within the business at a much earlier stage compared with a ‘traditional’ non insurance graduate who requires costly professional training and re-training and tuning towards a more positive attitude and mind-set.


2. Their studies add “real time” value. Any dissertations or thesis produced are based upon the organisation, so creates a natural platform for a critical thinking style of working that leads to innovation in business. 


3. This unique approach is a step towards addressing the current socio-economic issues surrounding the rising costs of higher education and the skills shortage within our industry.



3 Reasons why this model will be a game changer [Individual’s / Student’s Perspective] 


1. Unlike traditional University routes, in this “Earn while you learn” model, your career begins on day one of your employment. No more  job hunting after graduation, students will have gained three years’ worth of highly valuable work experience by the time they graduate with BA (Hons) Insurance and on successful completion will be placed to a suitable graduate level and meaningful job.


2. If you have been lucky enough to secure a meaningful job soon after graduation, then through this model I can guarantee that you will not start your new job with a debt of £65K hanging over your head.  You will either be debt free or carry a maximum debt of £9k with this model.


3. No more relying on the “Bank of Mum & Dad” to fund other aspects of your university studies. The salary obtained through employment will be adequate enough to support your lifestyle as a student. Allowing Mum & Dad to put aside a lump sum for early mortgage repayment!


I would encourage you to break away from the crowd and pioneer similar innovative approaches and grow your own graduate to secure the future of your business and our industry. 



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