2020 and the year of COVID-19 has had significant impact on Australia’s job market; according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics almost 600,000 Australians lost their jobs in April and this number has continued to rise as coronavirus restrictions have tightened across the country. Australia are now facing one of the highest unemployment rates on record while on the flipside, an average of 340,000 higher education students will approximately graduate this year, with international students accounting for more than a third of those enrolled at universities. These students are eager and ready for work but now face one of the most profoundly uncertain job markets of our time.
There’s a common misconception that hiring new graduates is risky due to their limited work experience and many newly graduated students have experienced difficulty in overcoming this bias to land their first role. Certainly, in today’s current climate the limited companies that are hiring are even more trepidatious in reaching out to students. However, graduates can be a great investment for an organisation and recent research has revealed that particularly within the public sector, opening up the hiring pool to those outside government (including graduates) can accelerate innovation.
Graduates are Enthusiastic
Firstly, graduates bring abundant levels of enthusiasm. Being new to a role and the job market in general, graduates are keen to learn, progress in their careers and set a good impression. A recent study prepared by HAWORTH and WORK COLLECTIV which examined millennials in the workplace (those born between 1980 and 2000), found that millennials have a hunger to get ‘up to speed’ within companies and show greater company loyalty than their international counterparts. This is believed to be the result of an insecure job market and the higher levels of educational debt millennials possess in comparison to previous generations. A key aspiration for many respondents in the study was to secure a house, which could also explain the dedication and commitment millennials are bringing to their first roles, as they know the difficulty they will face in the current housing market to secure property.
Graduates Can Be A Long Term Investment
Secondly, because of their drive and ambition, graduates are anxious to kickstart their career trajectory. By thinking about the long-term needs of your company, hiring a graduate with a lot of drive and potential can be seen as a great business investment. Because of minimal professional experience, graduates don’t have any prior work-habits and thus represent a blank canvas in which a company can train and guide them towards specific managerial roles.
Graduates are Tech Savvy
Finally, new graduates bring with them a wealth of technological experience. Millennials are the first generation of digital natives. The HAWORTH and WORK COLLECTIV study found that their natural competence with technology and the ease in which they can customise it, enables them to adapt, iterate and multi-task well. As they’ve also just graduated, millennials will have the latest market knowledge and can bring with them a fresh perspective and the latest technological tools to approach systems and processes within the workplace.
Graduates Can Help Provide Innovation
This thinking has been reinforced by a recent article from The Mandarin, which highlighted the fact that public sector organisations internationally, are exploring talent exchange programs and deliberately opening up their recruitment processes in order to bring fresh ideas into government. Furthermore, a Deloitte Insights report demonstrated the benefits US federal government agencies experienced (including greater agility and innovation strategy) when altering their expectations for new hires. Australia’s public sector has a reputation of being very insular when advertising new roles, however these findings suggest the benefits in creating an environment that is ‘open to anyone who has the skills, ability and motivation to serve the public good’.
Public Sector People feel strongly about the advantages that new and future graduates can provide, which is why we are excited to partner again with Deakin TALENT, the Careers and Employment Service for Deakin University, which assists graduates in finding roles within councils across regional Victoria. Our consultant Bryony Reid is working closely with Deakin TALENT to help graduates get their resumes in front of hiring managers and assist successful candidates with relevant resources (sample questions and videos) during the shortlisting process.
The program offers a range of opportunities for graduates across multiple disciplines, with the aim to help current and future graduates make a successful transition into the workforce.
“Deakin TALENT are proud to be working with Public Sector People in developing our Deakin graduates into candidates for roles within the regional and metropolitan Victorian public sector. With the support of PSP we hope to educate and prepare our students and graduates for opportunities available for a variety of degree qualifications across Victoria.” – Lauren Murray, Deakin TALENT
If you are interested in finding out more about Deakin TALENT or the graduates we are actively working with, feel free to reach out to Bryony on the details below.
Phone: 0481 708 966
In the meantime Bryony has provided some tips for graduates currently looking to enter the workforce: