Finding a job right out of school is always daunting. Many students apply to as many jobs as they can in hopes that just one of them will result in a hire. However, this strategy often backfires, backlogging the employment market and reducing productivity for students and employers. According to the Hays Global Skill Index, companies have trouble filling many of their openings even when they get numerous applications.
Almost everyone understands that the job hunt is stressful, so how can participants in the employment market come together to mitigate this? First, it is important to acknowledge that this problem cannot be solved by a single company or individual--it has to involve cooperation between companies, educational institutions, and students. With this in mind, it’s possible to think of holistic approaches to combating talent mismatch.
For corporations, it’s essential to provide professional development opportunities for employees to learn and grow within their roles. If a company is aiming for all of its workers to have a certain set of skills, it is important that they teach these skills. Though this certainly requires devotion of time and resources, it boosts employee morale and productivity. Ongoing professional development means that the company is always growing and improving, and that current employees may be rewarded for their hard work with promotions.
The onus cannot fall completely on companies, however. Pre-professional educational institutions need to make sure they are staying up to date with employment trends so that they continue to provide the most appropriate and efficient information to students who are paying to learn about a given industry. This means that staying on top of current technology and understanding the ins and outs of the employment market are key to making sure that the next generation of students is prepared to enter the workforce upon graduation.
Lastly, students need to be aware of what jobs they are qualified for. It can be extremely tempting to apply to as many jobs as possible, but this approach is counterproductive and a complete waste of time. Writing cover letters is tedious and draining, so why write more than you need to? Companies often end up disposing of applications that don’t fit their needs anyway, so there is wasted effort on both sides. It is important to apply to jobs that match one’s skills and qualifications so that recruiters have fewer shot-in-the-dark applications to sift through and can focus on personalizing the process more.
If employers, schools, and applicants all cooperate and contribute to the recruitment process to the best of their ability, the experience will become more pleasant and streamlined over time. Though institutional change takes time, open communication and cooperation on all sides will make the job hunt significantly less stressful.