M&G Plc. is a global investment manager based in London that was founded in 1931 to help people grow savings and assets. There are now 6000 employees in offices across 20 countries in Europe, Asia, and North America. M&G's principles are impact, inclusion, and innovation, which guide its commitment to sustainability, diversity, and responsible investments.
There are multiple early careers schemes with M&G to encourage young people to get involved in the financial industry. This includes a summer internship and the apprenticeship programme, which is open for those who do not have a degree to help diversify the financial workplace. The graduate and apprenticeship schemes are 12-24 months long and give you hands-on experience in different areas of business, as well as the opportunity to take formal qualifications and career development training.
M&G Application Process
The application process is a four-step process including an online assessment, a video interview, and an assessment centre.
The graduate scheme is hired on a yearly-basis with applications opening in September for the following year. You are allowed to apply for one scheme per year, so if you are unsuccessful, you will have to wait until the next hiring season.
If you are applying for the apprenticeship scheme, then the process is slightly different. You can list up to 3 roles by preference and there is an additional telephone interview.
Online Application Form
Your online registration and application form should take around 20 minutes to complete. Here you upload your CV and contact information, as well as some questions about your interests and experience.
Again, remember that for graduates and interns, you can only apply to one scheme per application season. Make sure that your CV is up-to-date and really shows your relevant strengths and experience.
Online Assessment Tests
The online assessments will be reviewed alongside your application and used together to decide whether or not you will advance in the process.
Each test is around 30 minutes long and you are able to complete each one at separate times, but you cannot pause during a test. Those applying for the graduate scheme should allow 2 hours to take all of the tests at once, while those applying for the apprenticeship should allot 1 hour. You will be able to download a full feedback report on your results afterwards.
Logical Reasoning Test
To test your general cognitive abilities and how well you process complex information, you will be given a logical reasoning test. Financial jobs require you to be able to interpret and analyse large sets of data, spotting patterns, and filtering out key information to draw logical conclusions from, which is why employers like to use these tests.
You will be presented with images or alphanumeric sequences and asked to identify patterns or errors. Typically, logical reasoning tests have a high number of questions for the time limit to demonstrate how you work under pressure and if you can think rationally in a stressful situation.
Situational Reasoning Test
Asituational reasoning test is designed to show employers how you might react to certain workplace environments and challenges. You will be presented with scenarios and asked to rate responses by which you think is most appropriate.
Employers like to use SJT because they show a range of competencies that are otherwise hard to gauge from a CV or interviews such as teamwork, commercial awareness, and relationship building. It also gives an insight into your working style and temperament, which helps employers place you in the right environment and support your career development.
Personality questionnaires are becoming more popular when it comes to early career hiring and employee development programmes. These are not tests as there are no right or wrong answers, but simply help employers to get a better sense of who you are, how you like to get things done, and what motivates you.
The questionnaire is tailored towards the financial industry, so is assessing traits that are commonly found in successful employees like ambition, cooperation, and adaptability. However, it is important to remember that being honest is the best tactic when it comes to answering a personality assessment. They are designed to help employers place you in the right environment and understand how you work.
Strengths-Based Video Interview
M&G use a strength-based interview style for the digital interview, which means that it is focused on asking you about your interests, passions, and successes. There are three types of questions:
- What was your favourite subject at school?
- Describe a successful day.
- Tell me about your hobbies.
- Do you prefer working individually or as a team?
- Do you work better in a relaxed environment or a busy one?
- Would you rather work behind the scenes or front of house?
- Tell me about a time you navigated a difficult work situation.
- How would you handle being given a task you'd never done before?
- How would you manage working with someone you don't like?
Be honest and show your enthusiasm for your experiences and achievements, as the recruiters are looking for what makes you tick. Confident body language and speaking clearly is especially important for a digital interview as they do not see you in person.
The assessment centre is where you get to meet with M&G staff, current graduates, and the other candidates. It is a full day of networking and activities such as presentations, group exercises, and face-to-face interviews.
There are a variety of different group tasks you may be asked to do, but the most common is where you have to work together to solve a hypothetical business issue. The focus here is not getting the right solution (there may not be one) but instead showing how you work in a team situation. Make sure to get involved, listen to others, and develop ideas collaboratively.
Finally, there is an interview with two professionals from the area you have applied to. This is also a strength-based interview, so expect similar questions to the digital interview, but more in-depth as this is a two-way conversation. The interviewers will build their questions on your CV and previous interview answers, so be prepared to go into more detail and relate your experience to the skills they are looking for.
M&G expect you to prepare by researching the company, the financial services industry as a whole, the role you have applied for, and any qualifications you will be getting through your scheme. This is all the minimum information that you need to show that you are passionate about joining M&G and taking advantage of all the opportunities the early careers schemes give you.