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Advanced evidences millennial and graduate success from talent programme
Press //18-08-2016

Advanced evidences millennial and graduate success from talent programme

by Alex Arundale, Chief People Officer, OneAdvanced

Advanced offers viable choice for A-level students considering career in IT

Advanced, the third largest software provider to the UK market, has today unveiled early results from its major talent acquisition programme in Birmingham. Within four months, Advanced has successfully hired 150 new recruits at its West Midlands HQ at the Mailbox, of which 96% are millennials (those aged between 19 and 35). In addition, 90% of the new hires are either fresh graduates, graduates with relevant working experience or with no relevant working experience. However, the company has only attracted 6% of A-level students into its programme.

Advanced is undergoing one of the largest transformations of any UK business today, which includes recruiting into 1,000 roles during 2016 and 2017, 400 of which will be based in the company’s new Midlands HQ at the Mailbox in Birmingham.

Their unique high potential entry level programme is designed to attract Britain’s best talent, actively welcoming both graduates and non-graduates of all ages and backgrounds looking to pursue a career in IT. Candidates undergo a rigorous assessment and, if successful, are offered the chance to fast track their careers within the organisation.

Gordon Wilson, CEO, Advanced said: “As a major British employer, we have a responsibility, as well as an opportunity, to identify and inspire dynamic talent to join our team. As we transform and re-imagine our business, we know that having an agile workforce is important in being able to grow and prosper in this changing world. We know motivated millennials play an important role in that, whether they have graduated or not.

“We want today’s A-level students to understand they have a real choice about their future and one of the options available to them is to enter the workplace immediately with the right company. We now have proven evidence that we can identify and attract graduates, but recognise that A-level students are an untapped opportunity.”

Alex Arundale, HR Director, Advanced said: “For many reasons, university is simply not the right choice for all A-level students but we are challenging the pre-conceived idea that this rules out a successful professional career in the IT industry. We’re passionate about having a recruitment programme that avoids unconscious bias, and that is based on skills and competency with candidates from diverse backgrounds. We believe it should be based on capability and potential, ensuring everyone is given a chance – frankly, CVs are thrown out the window.

“Feedback from our millennials tells us that they feel we provide a stimulating learning environment for them to operate in which provides them with the professional development they are looking for.”

Results from the recruitment drive at the Mailbox, Birmingham:

Number of recruits:

  • 150 against an 18-month target of 400: 37.5%

Graduate status:

  • % of candidates without a degree: 10%
  • % of graduate candidates straight from university: 45%
  • % of graduate candidates with some limited experience: 30%
  • The remaining 15% are graduate candidates with relevant working experience and hired for more senior roles

Age demographics:

  • % of candidates aged 19-21: 6%
  • % of candidates aged 22-24: 56%
  • % of candidates aged 25-30: 30%
  • % of candidates aged 30+: 8%

Gender split:

  • 60% male vs 40% female

Advanced is recognised as a British business success story having grown to a £750m company in just eight years. Following its acquisition by Vista Equity Partners in March 2015, the business has undergone significant transformation and investment in its people and solutions, creating a solid platform for further impressive growth.

Advanced’s transformation programme includes a four stage programme of re-branding, relocation, restructure and recruitment.

Advanced employs 2,000 people and has a loyal customer base of more than 20,000 organisations including Virgin Trains, Harvey Nichols, Birmingham Children’s Hospital and Carewatch.

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Alex Arundale

Alex Arundale


Chief People Officer, OneAdvanced

Alex joined OneAdvanced in February 2016 with a track record in senior HR positions. She has been responsible for innovative strategies to lead the company’s talent management.

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