Goldman makes a change to the way it hires

Lloyd Fonzie Blankfein

'Leveraging technology'.

The firm is doing away with first-round on-campus interviews and leveraging technology to help it screen potential hires.

In its ongoing quest to hire the right candidates, Goldman Sachs is making changes to its undergraduate recruiting program, doing away with first-round on-campus interviews and leveraging technology to help it screen potential hires.

"We have to figure out how to cast the net as widely as possible," said Edith Cooper, Goldman's global head of human capital management and executive vice president.

The changes are part of Goldman's efforts to hire a more diverse workforce, one made up of people from different economic, educational and geographic backgrounds but who share characteristics the company sees as essential to be able to work at the bank including judgment, problem-solving and integrity. It is also part of the bank's effort to find people who want to have a career at Goldman, not those who see it as a two-year stepping stone to a job elsewhere.

Russell Horwitz, co-chief operating officer of the securities division said that years ago, the conventional way to recruit talent meant looking at a resume noting where a candidate went to high school, college and their grade point average. This way, he said you were assured of getting the best students. What Goldman has found is this is not always the best way to find candidates for a long-term career at the firm. 

So Goldman started working on revamping the process last fall. Its rollout coincides with the 2017 recruiting season which begins on July 1. It will be used to determine the candidates chosen for its summer analyst program, and its campus analyst program.

Undergraduates seeking a summer internship with Goldman, or a job out of college, will now do the first interview via video, on a platform called HireVue. Mike Desmarais, global head of recruiting, said the firm is also changing the interview protocol and will use standardized questions that will allow for better comparisons among the candidates.

As for resumes, he said, the firm is using technology to scan them for certain words and experiences that it has found are good barometers of a person's success at Goldman and is exploring using a personality questionnaire as part of the recruiting process. Lastly, Desmarais said, Goldman continues to look for new ways social media can help it reach its target audience.

The new strategy does not mean Goldman will abandon its relationship with target schools — sources of talent for many years now. Cooper said the firm will still have an on-campus presence at these schools, but technology will allow it to reach a much bigger pool of people who are interested in working at the firm.

Correction: Russell Horwitz is the co-chief operating officer of Goldman's securities division and Mike Desmarais is the firm's global head of recruiting. An earlier version misspelled their names.

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