ANZ has made a surprising change to the way it recruits for its Graduate Program: it no longer asks candidates for resumes on application.
Instead, graduates are invited to play a series of digital neuroscience games that collect objective behavioural data. This provides insight into possible strengths and development areas of candidates.
Cholena Orr, Talent and Culture at ANZ, says: “The idea behind it is that by having candidates play these games, we collect more job-relevant information than via a resume.”
“This helps us make more informed decisions on whether the candidates are the right fit for the graduate program, whilst also removing the bias that may be applied when reviewing CVs or resumes
The unusual move was brought in to improve the overall Graduate experience whilst also encouraging a more diverse pool of talent into the bank.
“It meets our needs as a business to make sure we are providing a fair and equitable process,” Orr says “People often make judgements about candidates and their values based on their resume.”
“For instance, we know from consulting with various universities and candidates that they often have volunteer experience because they know it is viewed highly when they apply for a job.”
“But what our teams were taking from that was that the candidate had a great sense of value, and was community focused, which speaks to our purpose.”
Orr adds that assumptions may have also been made about people based on the university they attended or even their address, and these judgements were limiting the diversity of ANZ’s graduate pool.
“The research that we have seen suggests that by taking the resume out of the process, we are more likely to attract a diverse pool of qualified candidates coming through to ultimately interview.”
She also points out that ANZ’s new approach of playing these neuroscience games provided a better "experience for the candidates themselves”. For instance, not only are the games interactive and fun, candidates are able to choose when they would like to play and they will automatically receive an individualised report that talks to their inherent cognitive and emotional traits. We hope this will “lead them to recommend the program to other graduates”.
One of the qualities that ANZ is particularly looking for when it recruits graduates is that they have strong values.
“It comes down to five things: acting with integrity; collaborating across our business; taking full accountability for your work and the results of your work; being respectful to customers, colleagues and even our competitors; and striving for excellence,” Orr says.
“We refer to our values as your ticket to play. If a graduate doesn’t demonstrate those values through the process that is a select out.”
This year ANZ is increasing its graduate recruitment for technology roles, and Orr says it is looking to hire four-times the number of graduates in this area in its next cohort compared to previous years.
“We are starting to look for a different capability mix in our graduates as well.”
“We are looking for data driven, insightful, tech savvy early talent, not just people who can come in and do the fundamentals, but candidates who can help change the way we think and approach our work.”
As part of ANZ’s program, graduates are given rotations across different business units at least every six months.
“They get to build networks and learn in each of those areas, while at the same time, we provide them with professional development to help them build their leadership and soft skills,” Orr says.
ANZ is a big proponent of human-centred design, and the team have used this approach to help transform the graduate experience at ANZ.
“Human-centred design has been a game changer for the Graduate Program,” she says.
“We have looked at the entire graduate journey and talked to graduates, coaches, line managers and university students about how they have experienced our program, what worked well for them and what hasn’t, and we have continued to engage with the graduate community to help us improve the overall graduate experience.”
“The feedback we receive from the graduates is that they feel more engaged in the solution and the changes that we make to our program,” she says.