The Exponential  Agency along with more than 100 other NZ businesses and organisations has put its support behind this initiative to change the conversation around what we define as ‘talent’. We believe this is important in order to recognise that rapidly changing consumer behaviours and technology is redefining what ‘talent’ looks like in the marketplace.
As part of this we have signed an open letter to NZ along with over 100 other NZ companies declaring that we do not require a traditional tertiary qualification for a range of skills-based roles within our company. This is because we recognise that new technology and consumer demands are changing the type of skills and talent required for roles. Because of this, we recognise we need to change the way we recruit for certain roles within our business.
As a result, and when recruiting for talent, we will consider applicants for any roles we have regardless of whether or not they hold a tertiary qualification.  Our focus will be on assessment of necessary skills, attitudes, motivation and adaptability to join our organisation. Prior work experience (full or part-time), community work, portfolios, online learning and entrepreneurial endeavours will be some of the things we will consider during the employment process.
Finally, it is important to note that we are not in any way denouncing tertiary education, but rather recognising that talent can be acquired through life-long learning and multiple pathways.
The full press release follows

Tertiary education not required
Businesses sign open letter to present new approach to recruitment 

More than 100 companies have signed an open letter declaring tertiary qualifications are not required for a range of roles within their workplaces.

The open letter titled ‘NZ Talent’ was signed by the companies listed below, with an aim to change the conversation around education in New Zealand.

It states they do not require tertiary qualifications for a range of skills-based roles in their companies. Instead, the focus during recruitment will be on assessing the skills, attitudes, motivation and adaptability of applicants. (Read the letter on NZ Talent.org or here )

Trade Me, a signatory, has launched a ‘no qualifications’ search filter on a the Trade Me Jobs site to highlight skills-based roles being advertised with no qualification required. Job hunters can search these roles through the Trade Me job site or attrademe.co.nz/jobs/nztalent

Head of Trade Me Jobs Jeremy Wade says Trade Me wants to make sure all Kiwis are aware of their options.

“While tertiary qualifications and study work well, it is certainly not the only avenue to securing a great job as many employers value life experience and passion above all else.”

The open letter is an initiative under the ASB/KPMG Strategic Insights Panel (SIP), a group of 30 senior business leaders from New Zealand companies who have set a goal to help double GDP per capita growth from 1.5% to 3% by 2021.

The letter is one of the pieces of work panel members think can help impact that goal.

Frances Valintine, who co-led the NZ Talent initiative under the SIP, says the letter recognises the growing demand from employers for skills that are often learned outside the traditional tertiary framework.

“Businesses across New Zealand are struggling to find talented employees that can bring enthusiasm, natural talent, passion and potential to their companies as qualifications do not always reflect the true capability of applicants,” Valintine says.

“Solving the talent crisis requires bold new ways to match people, capability and jobs and I believe removing the fixed requirement for a formal qualification is a great first step.”

EdCollective chief executive Luc Shorter says tertiary education remains valuable but cannot be considered the only route to employment.

“Traditional tertiary education will always have a place, but industries and the way people access knowledge has changed and is continuing to change at pace. As such, we need to validate additional pathways for getting people into skilled jobs,” Shorter says.

“People learn a great deal from their work and life experience; we need to be more open to valuing that.”

ASB executive general manager business Steve Jurkovich says ASB shares the view there is a growing demand for contemporary skills which are often learned outside formal education programmes.

“We hope the letter will start a conversation around the different pathways to prepare young people for employment and what businesses can do to attract the right talent in the fast-changing job market.”

Open Letter signatories:  ASB, Adherium, AIA, AMS, Animation Research, Artificial Intelligence Forum NZ, Autex, AWF Madison, Bidfood Limited, Bobux, Booktrack, Buckley Systems, Cardinal Logistics, Catalyst, Ceres Organics, Child Fund, CoHired, Colliers International, Criffel Station, Delmaine, Direct Capital, Eat My Lunch, Ed. Collective, Edmund Hillary Fellowship, Enspiral Dev Academy, Epay, Exess Connectivity, Figure NZ, Fisher and Paykel Healthcare, Fonterra, Foodstuffs North Island, Fronde, Frontside, Giftstation, Go Bus, Harrison Grierson, HiFX, Hi-Tech Trust, Hunchbuzz, Iceberg, Icebreaker, Icehouse, iMoko, Intergen, Invenco Group Limited, IT Engine Limited, Jucy, Kiwirail, Kotahi, KPMG, Manaiakalani Trust, Metlifecare, Microsoft, Moa, Mondiale, Movio, My Food Bag, Naveya and Sloane, Next Foundation, Noel Leeming, NW Group, NZ Rise, NZ Tech, NZRS, OMG Tech, Optimal Business Intelligence, Optimisation, Osynlig, PledgeMe, Prestige Law, Pure Commerce, QualIT, Radius Care, Ria, Roam, Ruckus Media, Rush Digital, Safestack, Shine, Skycity, SMX, Solarcity, Soul Machines, Spark, Spidertracks, Summerset Group, Swaytech, Tech Futures Lab, The Exponential Agency, The Mind Lab, The Warehouse, Torpedo 7, Totara Learning, Tourism Holdings NZ, Trade Me, Trilogy International Limited, Unfiltered, Unitec, Vend, Venture Centre NZ, Vista Group, Waiora Pacific, Warehouse Stationary, WorldFront, Xero 


About the ASB/KPMG Strategic Insights Panel

·         The ASB/KPMG Strategic Insights Panel was launched in September 2016 as a place where business can go to fast-track key projects to create the best opportunities for the social and economic prosperity of New Zealand.

·         The Panel is a group of 30 senior business leaders from a range of NZ companies.

·         The group has set a five-year goal: To contribute towards doubling the rate of growth of New Zealand’s GDP per capita through innovation, from 1.5% to 3% by 2021.

·         NZ Talent has been set up to help achieve this goal by raising awareness of the opportunities available to young New Zealanders, outside the traditional tertiary education.

·         More information on the SIP here:https://www.asb.co.nz/commercial-corporate-banking/strategic-insights.html

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