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Fiona Dunsire appointed UK CEO for Mercer
 
 Mercer has announced that
Fiona Dunsire has been
appointed UK market
leader and CEO. She
previously worked as
senior client leader in
Mercer’s investments
business, advising
clients on the full range
of investment consulting
services. Prior to that,
she was business leader
for Mercer’s investment
consulting business in
the UK for over five
years. Dunsire has been a
member of several
leadership teams within
 
 Mercer advising on high
profile cross-business
collaborations, including
Mercer’s Workplace
Savings solution.
  
   “I’m very pleased to
be appointed UK chief
executive and am looking
forward to the challenges
ahead,” she commented.
“Mercer will continue to
provide excellent
pensions and benefit
advice to our trustee
clients, but our market
is changing and, in the
years ahead, we will be
 
 looking to further
develop our relationship
with companies on all
aspects of their people
and benefit strategies.
  
   “Companies will
continue to need Mercer’s
support in developing
effective defined
contribution schemes and
managing the risk posed
by their defined benefit
pension schemes. However,
we are increasingly being
called on to advise
companies on how to
attract, motivate and
 
 manage the best talent,”
she continued.
“Historically, we have
been ahead of the
competition in delivering
products and services
that address specific
client problems. I can
see tremendous
opportunity in bringing
Mercer’s expertise to
bear on the broader
issues faced by human
resources and finance
directors.”
  
   Simon O’Regan, Mercer
president for Europe and
 
 the Pacific, said: “The
UK is a key part of our
global business. We have
grown strongly in the UK
in recent years, driven
by our commitment to
innovation focused on
addressing our clients’
needs. We are excited to
have someone of Fiona’s
experience and capability
to lead our business
going forward.”
 
 
Applications rocket 300% for London-based apprenticeship jobs at PwC
 
 Applications to
professional services
firm PwC, for their
London based Higher
Apprenticeship and School
Leaver programme have
risen 318% since the
financial crisis began,
as the City gears up for
one of the largest ever
Apprenticeship fairs in
Hackney on Wednesday.
  
   Applications from
London and the surrounds
to the firm’s school
leaver programmes doubled
last year to over 1000,
as over 30 new Higher
Apprenticeship jobs were
created in the firm’s
London Bridge and
Embankment based
Consulting and Tax teams.
40% of all applications
nationwide for student
level jobs were for
London roles.
 
   
   PwC has recruited
London school leavers for
over ten years, and last
year the firm launched
the first ever nationally
recognised Higher
Apprenticeship for the
professional services
industry. The programme
offers students the
chance to earn while they
learn, and work towards
an internationally
recognised industry
qualification in tax,
consulting or audit. This
year the firm will
recruit around 50 Higher
Apprentices in London in
Tax and Consulting.
  
   Richard Irwin, head of
recruitment said:
“London’s always a
popular choice for our
graduate jobs, but the
level of interest in the
 
  
   
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 career.
   However just 11% had
the opportunity to hear
from at least three
working professionals
before leaving school or
college.
  
   Gaenor Bagley, head of
people, PwC said: “We
have to demystify the
world of work, business
and young people’s
options for study if we
are to realistically
attract a wider range of
people to the professions
and the City.
  
   “With the routes into
work and training
changing so radically
over the past five years,
Higher Apprenticeships
are a simple idea, with
far –reaching
consequences for
development of business
 
 skills, to support UK
growth.”
  
   “The cost of raising
awareness is low, and
there is much to gain for
both employers and
students from events as
simple as an open day, or
presentation on how
someone’s skills and
training led them to the
job they do.”
  
   PwC will run a series
of workshops at the
Careers Fair, providing
personal career stories
from PwC's own staff on
job options in the
industry, a survival
guide to job interviews
and applications, and
Q&As on Higher
Apprenticeships at the
firm with recent new
joiners.
 
 Higher Apprenticeship
proves that students are
seriously considering
alternatives, and are
waking up to the fact
that not all City careers
in the future will have
to start with
university.”
  
   A recent study by the
Education & Employers
Taskforce on perceptions
of Apprenticeships
reported that 88% of
young adults who heard
from three or more
employers about careers
while at school say it
helped them decide on a