Graduates face tougher tests than CEOs when applying for jobsSENIOR EXECS GET AN EASIER RIDE WITH INTERVIEWS, TESTS AND BACKGROUND CHECKS

Applying for graduate jobs? You’ll probably have to jump through more hoops than the boss of the company did to get his or her job as CEO.

A new report has found that graduates go through more interviews, tests and background checks than company bosses. CEOs are less scrutinised than graduates as it is assumed leaders do not lie.

Researchers at due diligence company HireRight found that almost half of HR leaders (45%)  know organisations where Chief Executives go through fewer interviews, tests and background checks than graduates. A third (37%) admit this is the case in their own company. One in three CEOs (31%) do not undergo any form of due diligence during their appointment.

HireRight’s research reveals that half (49%) admit they simply assume candidates applying for senior positions have not lied on their CV or application, with connections winning half (49%) of all high level positions in UK organisations. Steve Girdler, managing director EMEA at HireRight, said it was shocking that graduates faced tougher tests than CEOs, given the difference in responsibility and sal:

“Leaders are no longer figureheads only at carefully orchestrated press conferences. An entire organisation’s reputation can be damaged with a mobile phone image or an inaccurate CV, followed by the click of a mouse.

“Yet companies are putting the reputation and success of their entire business at risk by not carrying out suitable levels of due diligence on their board members — who clearly pose a significantly greater threat than graduates.”

Many of Graduate Fog’s readers say you feel the application and interview processes for graduate job is far too long, often involving more than one application form, an assessment centre day, online tests or tasks, plus multiple interviews either on the phone or in person. So it will be galling to hear that the bosses of the companies you’re applying for may only have been through a fraction of this procedure in order to gain their fat salary and position as the company’s Top Dog.

(PS. Top marks to RBS, who tell us their application form takes less than an hour to complete! Don’t you wish more employers were as considerate?)


How long do you spend on every job application – and do HR departments ask for too much? What’s your reaction to the news that graduates face tougher tests than CEOs when applying for jobs?

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