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Deloitte aims to guarantee talent supply with undergrad program


Joint venture with Adelaide University offers work experience to broad range of undergraduates.

By Keeli Cambourne 13 minute read

Deloitte Australia aims to future-proof its recruitment and avoid the staffing crisis with an internship program in partnership with Adelaide University.

The Deloitte Academy offers undergraduates a paid experience that counts towards a degree, plus tailored electives that also contribute credit.

The academy, with its first intake scheduled for 2023, will also offer a postgraduate award, a Professional Certificate in Advisory Services, for completing two extra courses during semester breaks.


Prospective students will apply via a competitive process in their first semester and if they are successful, will join the program in the second semester. The application process will take into consideration a student’s work, leadership and team experience, and academic results.

Deloitte managing partner for South Australia, Hendri Mentz, (on far right with, from left: Jess Perry, Braden Phillips and Jenny Taing of the university), said the academy was another way of ensuring the firm had a pool of experienced talent for the medium and long term.

“This program builds on a number of like-minded strategies already underway at Deloitte, such as our Adelaide-based Centre for Innovation and Technology, which develops large-scale technology and audit solutions for our clients nationwide,” he said.

“The skills shortage is very real and it is not going to go away for a number of years.”

He said South Australia lacked sufficient professional services positions to keep graduates in the state, so they went to Sydney or Melbourne.

“If we can give them opportunities in South Australia for a professional services career, we can keep them here as well as help resolve the skills shortages,” he said.

The academy would ensure students were work-ready and although the program was based in South Australia, its impacts would be felt much wider.

“If these students eventually want to work interstate and overseas, they can do that within our network,” he said.

“For the university it comes back to making sure students get employment outcomes, and have a high rate of employment when they leave.

“We wanted to design a program that makes sure the student experience is great and that they get work-integrated opportunities.”

One special feature of the academy program is its broad intake, which will go beyond business and commerce students to those taking degrees in engineering, science, technology, arts, economics and law.

“The services Deloitte delivers are multi-dimensional,” Mr Mentz said. “We do everything from consulting on human capital to technology implementation as well as the traditional business services such as tax and legal, so we literally accommodate all those skills set.

“We are not just an accounting or audit firm, we bring together different experiences and backgrounds to deliver a comprehensive service.”

The first academy intake in 2023 will have the opportunity to sign up for specialised electives from the Deloitte suite.

“For example, a business student can take a coding elective to round out their experience,” Mr Mentz said.

Successful candidates would work within the Deloitte South Australian offices for two periods, each of four weeks, where they would get experience working with clients.

They would also have the opportunity to attend Deloitte immersion events, undertake mentoring and get involved with networking and workshop events.

“We want to expose them as much as we can to the world of work and business,” he said.

They can then also undertake an additional two subjects to achieve a professional certificate for postgraduate study and might have the opportunity to join Deloitte as graduate.

Professor Peter Høj, vice-chancellor and president at the University of Adelaide, said the program would provide students with a broader educational experience and the chance to develop skills valued by industry.

“It will enable participants to gain an additional advantage in being job-ready upon completion of their course and a pathway into impactful careers,” he said.  

“Students will develop future-ready capabilities including business acumen, self-leadership, advisory and technology skills. 

“This new student experience program is for students who are passionate and committed to setting themselves up for a rewarding and positive future.”

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