The Graduate Job Epidemic

I have to say I am quite disappointed at how we as a society are helping our grads get job ready.  Not enough is being done and students are bombing out for simple things.  Missing out on a great job is disappointing but when you are so young and vulnerable it is worse.

A great example we can learn from (now hear me out) is the of ‘job networks’.  These services support those who are disadvantaged in some way.  I have worked with many job networks to place people and I must say they don’t get the credit they deserve.  They really do help get them ready and I’ve placed many a good candidate using this service.  Shout out to those who I use!  Some of the talent I gained have been excellent.  But this service was set up due to our perception of those who have been unemployed or suffered in some way and this still needs to change (I’ll write on that later).

Just like grads though we are facing an epidemic.  Young adults who have spent a lot of money to study and get a good career.  We push them onto the street and expect them to find their way into the job market.  The job market has changed significantly over the past 12 months and is is very complex.

The way organisations recruit has changed – some opting for experience over study.  This is where we all can make a change.

Organisations – I challenge you to look inside your organisation to find candidates doing casual or a simple part time job.  Are you looking inside first for talent?  I do and have had much success not just from a graduate point of view but succession planning.

Graduates – I challenge you to look at the company you are in – speak to HR about when you will graduate and what you will be looking for.  You’ll (hopefully) be surprised.  It might be staring you in the face!

Universitys – I challenge you to get your careers team up with the times.  Get them engaged in industry and looking forward not just in the ‘now’.  I’m not saying by any means that you don’t do a good job but being institutionalised doesn’t help.

Some universitys I’ve worked with through past roles do it much better than others and it creates a point of different when engaging new students.

My fear, however is if we don’t do something NOW, we will have a well educated population with no work.  What affect will this have on the economy – we’ll lose them overseas, they’ll get into jobs that don’t use their full capacity or worse – fall on the employment heap.

I will be preparing a ‘job ready’ presentation with a great university next week.  I’m looking forward to using my knowledge to help students on the right path!

Why Aren’t We Starting With Our Grads to Tackle Diversity?

I’ve been involved in a number of graduate recruitment campaigns and have put hundred’s of graduates through assessment centres, psychological testing, video screening and aptitude tests.  I really feel for those graduates!   I often wonder if we over assess our graduates – we certainly put them though more testing than our experienced hires!  I also wonder why we put them through so many tests but look for the same results in the testing criteria ie academic scores, aptitude test, how they perform in assessment etc.  I think many organisations (not all) have graduates with very similar profiles.  Have a look at your own organisation – do your grads have the same profile?
Graduates are our future leaders and a great talent pipeline – if we are really trying to tackle diversity in organisations (and not just diversity of culture/gender etc) why are we all looking for the same thing?    This is where I see a great opportunity for organisations.
I’ve introduced diversity in graduate recruitment in the past and it has had a significant impact on diversity – not just diversity of backgrounds but of diversity of thinking.
If we really want to tack diversity – it should start with our graduates!