Accountancy firm Saffery Champness has dramatically cut the cost of recruiting graduates after the introduction of an online assessment system.
The new screening process has led to an increase in the proportion of graduate applicants accepting job offers from 50 per cent to 90 per cent.
The length of time it takes the company to recruit has also dropped from 11 months to four, allowing it to steal a march on its rivals by being in a position to make offers much more quickly.
HR director Jon Young said: "The old system was resource intensive, time consuming and very expensive. Getting a quick decision means we can offer jobs to graduates before other companies," he said.
He explained that by using web-based screening, the firm had cut costs by 67 per cent and in one instance was able to offer a job within two days of the student applying.
The online application uses a psychometric questionnaire and a 20-minute numerical test to find the type of graduate the company wants, while automatically rejecting unsuccessful applicants.
The best candidates are invited to a half-day assessment before a final offer is made.
Prior to online screening Young would receive around 1,000 applications for 15 graduate places, which would have to be sifted manually for suitable candidates.
The company would then invite a pool of applicants to a costly two-day interview and testing process that up to 60 per cent would subsequently fail.