23
Nov

Five Reasons To Give Fresh Grads A Chance At Your Enterprise

Five Reasons To Give Fresh Grads A Chance At Your Enterprise

Five Reasons To Give Fresh Grads A Chance At Your Enterprise

Image credit: Shutterstock

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The decision to hire a fresh-off-the-books college graduate isn’t one you would likely make if you are eyeing short-term profits. Indeed, employers can find it a more time-intensive effort to bring a new graduate up to speed, as opposed to onboarding someone who knows their way around the workplace. But when this activity is viewed as an investment, finding the right person for the job can be a decision that pays dividends for years.

The reality of the job market for fresh grads

It’s not news to anyone that the job market is a tough place; talents are in high supply, while jobs, on the other hand, are very limited.

But imagine trying to find a job as a recent college graduate. Not only do you have all other fresh graduates to compete with, but also thousands of job seekers with two or three times more experience than you. Unsurprisingly, 76% of fresh graduates in the MENA region say that finding a job is actually the biggest challenge facing their generation, as revealed in the July 2015 Bayt.com Fresh Graduates in the Middle East and North Africa survey.

The same survey also reveals that for 32% of fresh grads, the job search lasts between three and 12 months, while only 3% are able to get a job directly through campus placements. In fact, 80% of them state that their college or university do not help them identify job opportunities. Seven in 10 respondents believe that companies are hesitant to hire fresh graduates because these graduates may lack the needed on-the-job experience. We are all aware of the fact that the vast majority of job openings require at least two years of experience, on top of the college degree. This is why the challenge of starting a professional career from scratch seems nearly impossible for someone who’s just out of college. And unless they have an outstanding GPA, excellent recommendations and exceptional training and skills, the chances are that opportunity is going to go to someone else.

But it shouldn’t take a prodigy to fill a job opening. Most graduates have plenty of other things to offer a potential employer. Actually, hiring young graduates greatly benefits the companies that do hire them. But for a fresh graduate to get the job, a hiring manager has to give them a chance.

Five reasons why you should hire fresh grads

Sometimes it is difficult to look beyond professional experience when hiring a candidate. Naturally, experienced candidates require less training and know how to handle complex work tasks. Fresh graduates, on the other hand, don’t have much experience. There are many benefits, however, to hiring a fresh grad. Below are just some of these benefits and the reasons why you should hire fresh grads:

1) They don’t ask for much One of the main advantages of hiring fresh graduates is that hiring them is less expensive than hiring more experienced professionals. The market rate for hiring a fresh graduate is not very high. According to the Fresh Graduates in the MENA survey, July 2015, 31% of respondents do not expect a salary higher than US$500 a month in their first job. This doesn’t mean that you can hire a fresh graduate and pay them extremely low salaries, or salaries that are much lower than the market rate, but it provides an opportunity for your company to hire a talented individual at an entry-level rate and invest in them until they become star employees.

2) They bring innovative ideas and new perspectives Fresh graduates might have done a few internships, but they haven’t yet been instilled into the corporate world. Their mind isn’t affected by previous company practices and can bring a new perspective to your company. They might be able to point out flaws or solutions to existing problems in a creative and ingenious way. Most universities emphasize on the importance of innovation which these graduates bring to the table. In the MENA region, 61.8% of professionals say that innovation leads to improved financial performance, according to the Innovation in the MENA poll, January 2013.

3) They are masters of continuous learning Fresh graduates are often eager to learn and extremely determined to prove themselves. When given a task, they will tackle it wholeheartedly. They’re not afraid of asking questions. And being similar to a blank canvas, they can adapt to any corporate culture easily. They’re also open to new ideas and working styles.

 4) They have good technical and life skills Numerous technical skills, such as computer skills, are taught in college. This is very important as 58% respondents in the Fresh Graduates in the MENA survey feel that computer skills are required to excel in the workplace. Other skills fresh grads think are essential for success are linguistic skills (44%), communication skills (39%), and interpersonal skills (30%).

5) They are up-to-date with the latest technologies The generation gap becomes evident when it comes to technology. According to the Millennials in the MENA survey, February 2014, both millennials and the older generation agree that technology makes them effective at work. However, 75% of those below 35 years old believe their older colleagues do not take full advantage of technology available. On the other hand, younger employees are tech-savvy and well-informed. They know how to keep up with the latest technological trends and they can bring this, as an asset, to any job.

Are fresh grads the new ‘treps?

Our research has shown over and over again that millennials are more interested in running their own business than being employed. Unlike previous generations, for many millennials climbing the corporate ladders isn’t a goal they are struggling to attain. Actually, eight in 10 fresh graduates might be turning their backs on the traditional career path soon and instead become owners and runners of their own business, according to our research results.

Whether due to the economy or something else, it is clear that entrepreneurship in the MENA region has grown. In terms of future aspirations, 39% of fresh graduates are actively considering setting up their own business; 41% may consider it.

These findings mirror a Bayt.com survey in partnership with Stanford University, which showed that in every Arab country surveyed about 40% of respondents expressed interest in being self-employed, with 50% of them saying that they started a business because they wanted greater independence.

So, whether it is by reinforcing the role of universities in preparing fresh graduates for the workplace, or governments and local communities paving the way for entrepreneurial ventures or suitable job opportunities, fresh graduates in the MENA clearly need all the help they can get to obtain jobs they truly love and value.

Young people bring energy, ambition and familiarity with modern technologies to today’s workplaces. They are also more prone to being a great cultural fit for the company, as they haven’t been socialized to follow the practices of another company and aren’t set into routines or working styles that more seasoned hires may have a difficult time of casting off. Hiring an employee directly out of school gives employers the opportunity to shape a person’s professional growth and development– an experience that is rewarding for both the employer and employee.

Members of this generation of fresh grads have also proven to be innovative and better at analyzing and solving problems, reducing a certain amount of risk by increasing the probability that employers will be able to quickly recover their onboarding costs.

While most of these young job seekers firmly believe that their lack of experience is what is jeopardizing their job search, results from our research into the MENA region’s employment sector disagree with that assumption. The truth is, employers are increasingly tapping into the graduate talent pool; thousands of entry-level jobs are advertised on our website every day.

23
Nov

5 Life Lessons for Fresh Graduates

graduation

5 Life Lessons for Fresh Graduates

by Vladimir Zivanovic

Well, the day has finally come. At last, you’ve managed to graduate and earned the right to enjoy in this monumental achievement. Trust me: when reality begins to settle in, you will start to remember your college years as the best time of your life.

If you are interested to see what your life will be like from this point on, the following article will give you a rough idea. Here are some useful life lessons for those who have recently graduated.

Enjoy the perks of your recent success

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Don’t let this period of joy go to waste. You will have few more chapters in life that are this vibrant, so make sure you make the best of it. Of course, don’t grow too attached to this feeling either, because it will hold you back if you do not abandon it on time. Think of it this way: this time gap between your graduation day and the day when you need to enter the rat race is like a last meal for a convict who is a about to be executed.

Soon, you will get a job and start thinking about how to seriously advance in your career. The more you devote yourself to that goal, the more trapped you will feel. In order to graduate, you need to work hard, but if you want to advance in your career, you will need to make additional sacrifices.

Finishing college is a great achievement and you deserve to treat yourself by having a good time. Devote more of your time to doing what you love. Go travel and see other countries – maybe you’ll get new ideas for where you want your life to go. Your goal now is to make sure that once this period is over, your regrets are at a minimum.

 

Face your new reality

Here’s one of the major problems that will occur when your college days are over. During your studies, you have midterms and exams. These are all imposed responsibilities and, in a way, goals that you need to achieve. As long as you have those goals, you have a clear path in front of you.

Furthermore, you get evaluated and have a rough perception of your level of knowledge. So as long as you earn satisfactory grades, you have this idea of advancement and that your life is heading in the right direction. Once your student days are over, there are no more exams, there is no way to measure whether you are heading in the right direction, and on a subconscious level, that can be staggering.

The choices you make are your own, and every failure you experience is felt on a more personal level, which can undermine your confidence much more than any exam you failed. You will experience a new pressure to do something valuable and meaningful during your youth, but you may not have a clear idea of what that is or how you are going to pull it off. It’s like you start to hear this inner clock telling you how another day was wasted.

Moreover, you realize how your theoretical knowledge is not appreciated to the same extent in the real world. The important thing now is whether you have what it takes to do your job right. In a way, you are learning again from the very beginning. So, buckle up and start acquiring new and useful skills to create something meaningful.

If you think that your theoretical knowledge can help you become a good teacher, think again. It takes tremendous amounts of self improvement to become a good tutor. Just presenting an abundance of facts isn’t enough.

Start looking for a job

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Getting a job will change your life dramatically. Sure you won’t have as much free time as before, and you might not end up doing what you originally intended, but with income comes stability. In other words, it’s better to have a job and routine than to be stuck in limbo. Once you have solid ground to stand on, you’ll have a better perspective on what you should do to improve your lifestyle, plus you will advance in learning more practical skills.

Of course, this does not mean you should accept just any job that lands in your lap. Look for something that has more benefits than just earning cash. Make sure the employer accepts you as a valuable team member, get the job offer in writing, verify pay and benefits, see if commuting to your workplace takes too much time, and if you manage to get the job you want, send a thank-you letter to your employers to show them that you appreciate the opportunity given to you.

Another thing to remember is that you should start saving money as soon as you start earning it. It is far more satisfying to make a bigger investment than to focus the fleeting satisfaction that results from pampering every minor desire. This can be somewhat difficult, especially if you are still trying to adjust to a new lifestyle.

Try out freelancing

Let’s assume there are no desired jobs available in your vicinity, or that you still don’t know how to leave a good first impression. You need to work on your confidence and your portfolio, so freelancing is a great tool to solve those problems. While working as a freelancer, you will be able to earn some money while improving your skills.

The problem is that even people who need freelancers don’t want to hire someone who doesn’t have anything solid to back them up. Luckily, you’ll mostly converse via messages or emails, so it will be easier for you to leave a good impression. You might have to take on a few jobs at the beginning that won’t pay as much, but that will secure good references and reviews.

Visit places like Up Work and Craigslist to find job offers. There are various sites where people outsource writing jobs, design jobs, sound, video or photo editing jobs, and more. Additionally, if you want to develop your skills as a writer, start blogging and visiting places that pay their contributors. There are even job platforms that look for freelance handymen, so if you possess any particular skills, make sure you search out those relevant platforms.

Remember to save your money. If you work as a freelancer, you can never count on the same income each month, which is why spending too much is out of the question. The last thing you need is financial suicide, so take some time to organize your budget accordingly.

Don’t give up on your governing passions

Finally, never turn your back on your governing passions. They make up a big part of who you really are, and the biggest sense of achievement comes when you work in the right direction. You might not have as much time as you like, but with good organization, you’ll manage to find enough of it and do something fulfilling. If your job is completely different from what you truly love, either look for a new one or view it as a means to an end — something that can help you gather enough resources so that you can do something you are truly good at and love.

I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors, because let’s face it, we can’t all be superstars and legends in today’s world. Let’s keep our goals realistic. If you make the effort to end up where you want to be, eventually you’ll get there. And remember: it is perfectly normal to change your aspirations and to start working toward different achievements.