KPMG recruits 1,500 to 2,000 graduates each year in Hong Kong and Mainland China to support its fast expansion in the region. It targets top talents who are passionate, innovative, open and honest, and team players. But how can it achieve such a challenging target without sacrificing quality?
KPMG has adopted a rigorous selection process and top quality criteria with four steps before making an employment offer. First, candidates have to complete an online application form that includes information pertaining to the career ambitions and extracurricular activities of the applicants. More importantly, it emphasizes a person organization fit with its organizational values. Second, KPMG invites candidates to undergo numerical reasoning and verbal reasoning tests. These are intended to measure a candidate’s ability to analyze numerical data and information in a realistic context. The tests are objective selection tools that require good time management skills from the candidates.
Those passing the aptitude tests will be invited to analyze and present a company case to a manager. Candidates’ analytical, presentation, and problem-solving skills are assessed. Candidates will then have a one-to-one interview with the manager. A second interview is the final round of the selection process. Here shortlisted candidates meet with a partner. Questions involving the candidate’s background, extra-curricular activities, and current affairs are discussed.
Competency-based behavioural questions may be included. Possible questions include: “Can you give me an example that demonstrates your leadership ability” or “Can you share an experience about how you overcame difficulties?” Competencies such as team spirit, effective verbal communication, forward thinking, passion, and motivation in developing a career with the firm will also be assessed.
Thanks to the rigorous selection tools, KPMG manages to have a selection ratio of 1:9 (number hired to number of applicants) in its graduate recruitment exercise each year, showing the effectiveness of the above selection methods.
- Give a short summary of the case. Focus on the facts.
- Who are the stakeholders involved in the case and what are their interests?
- Identify the general HRM problem(s)/challenge(s)/issue(s). Justify your answers.
- What are the most important theoretical concepts linked to the case? Explain the concepts andtheir relevance to the case.
- Nowadays, the online application form is a popular initial selection method. Discuss the
advantages and disadvantages of this method.
- Evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of KPMG’s selection process and methods.
- What selection methods can be used to assess the creativity, honesty, and team-playing
attributes of the candidates? Explain why they are the effective solutions.
8. What interview questions can be asked to assess competencies such as effective verbal communication, forward thinking and career motivation? Write three interview questions for each competency.
9. If you were the owner of a small and medium size business, how would your company’s recruitment and selection process differ from that of KPMG’s?
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