Goldman Sachs reveal what they are looking for in graduate recruits!


Earlier in September a member of the Careers & Employability Service team attended an Insight Day hosted by Goldman Sachs. The insight day covered a multitude of recruitment processes they adopt when hiring graduates including:-

  • What they are looking for in recruits
  • What makes a candidate ‘stand out’
  • The Placement Opportunities they have available
  • What they expect from the application process
  • How students can find out more


What they’re looking for in recruits:

  • Interested in Students who are self-starters, who will search out opportunities, run with ideas and make an impact. Staff will be very well supported but not spoon fed.
  • GS stressed the need for students to have excellent team working and communication skills as they will need to work across teams and get involved, ask Q’s.
  • GS look at individual contribution and not age – this means very young staff can progress quickly based on their contribution not their age status.
  • GS look at the last qualification gained/expected – not on GCSE’s for example.
  • GS do not expect Students to have any work experience.
  • The Managing Director for Technology Division went to Southampton Uni and did a placement at GS and rose from Intern to Analyst to now Director in 10-13 yrs. with huge responsibility and travel.
  • Accept UG Placements but also MA and PhD, who if successful on placement would start with a higher package to reflect their investment in their education. Particularly STEM, Numeric and Technology subjects are sought after.
  • GS graduate vacancies generally go to students who have done an internship with them.

What makes a candidate ‘stand out’:-

  • Teamwork, evidence of extra curricula teamwork.
  • Listening, learning, open to change, adaptive.
  • Acceptance that the real world operates differently than theoretical learning they may have previously done.
  • Knowing which division they would like to work in and why, what are their skill set and motivators.
  • Being genuine in applications.



Time management, updating manager’s on progress, awareness of confidentiality, i.e. un-wise work related facebook posting.


Placement Opportunities

  • Less focussed on degree discipline and more on a student’s ability to learn.
  • Strong culture of training and staff development
  • Offer a short 2016 Student Challenge Web Link and long Summer Analyst internship – 10 weeks Spring Internships – 2 weeks Web Link, Work Placement Programme (1 year) Web link
  • Placements get a team buddy and out-of-team mentor.


  • less focus on online tests, but getting to know individuals
  • Require CV and 300 word motivation statement
  • Interviews are competency, behavioural and technical Q’s. 1st round = 1x 30mins, Final Round 3x 30 mins internal interview.
  • Focused on how students reach their answers rather than a ‘Correct answer’.


How students can find out more:

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