5 Reasons why you should not only hire from the top universities

5 Reasons why you should not only hire from the top universities by Andre Hunter on Unsplash

Our top 5 reasons why choosing only to hire from the top universities in the UK is a bad business move

It’s not unusual to see a job description mention that candidates must have a degree from a top 40 or even Russel Group university. But what is the thought behind choosing only to hire from the top universities?

We know that you only want to hire the best of the best, but putting hard candidate criteria like a first-class degree from a top university only limits your potential.

Here are the top 5 reasons why choosing only to hire from top universities is a big mistake.

1 – It’s more expensive

Top talent from universities like Oxford, Cambridge and even Birmingham can be expensive. This is especially true when your applicants have taken prestigious courses, like an MBA or even a computer science degree.

These candidates might expect a starting salary of double the usual. This means that where you could pay £20,000 for a fresh graduate from UEA, you could spend £40,000 on a Cambridge University MBA graduate.

And this is just their starting salary!

2 – There’s more competition

If you’re wanting to hire from this year’s Oxbridge cohort, you can bet that hundreds of other companies are planning to do the same.

You’ll end up competing for a scarce resource. This is where starting salaries can inflate again as you compete with big name organisations for the top graduates.

And top graduates might rather start their careers with a big, well-known company than begin their journeys at a startup. So you might be fighting a losing battle – the startup life isn’t for everyone!

3 – The skills myth

Some people have this idea that graduates from The Open University and graduates from a Russel Group are completely different things.

And this can be true in that Oxbridge don’t allow students to have part-time jobs – perpetuating the inaccessibility of the course for lower-income families – where The Open University is full of people working and studying well full-time.

Being able to juggle work and study is a skill in itself. It leads to great time management, organisation, self-motivation and independence.

But the prestige that comes with an Open University degree can be minuscule in comparison to one from Oxbridge.

4 – They don’t always perform better

Graduates from top universities have had a better education! This means that they’ll perform better in the workplace!

Well, not always.

Some studies have found that the amount of education your employees have doesn’t correlate to job performance. But other studies have found the opposite. So what’s the truth?

We find that the best way to see who will perform best on the job is to use a skills test. We take an element of the role and turn it into a short task for job applicants to complete. It works quite well!

5 – They’re less diverse

The top universities have a reputation for being stuffed full of rich white men. Although this is starting to change in recent years, Oxbridge still aren’t all that diverse.

Coming back to the point about working through university, for lots of young people going to Oxbridge is just not realistic. When you don’t have a family that can pay your bills for you, some can’t choose to not work through university.

When you choose only to hire from top universities, you’ll find fewer applicants from a lower socio-economic background. Your team will become homogenous and you’ll lose the diversity that makes businesses excel.

If you need any help sourcing skilled candidates from all kinds of backgrounds, sign up to DigitalGrads and start hiring today!

About post author

Hi, I'm Daisy. I'm using my passion for writing to work with DigitalGrads on their content and social media campaigns.
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