From education to employment

Why graduates think they can’t land graduate jobs

Higher Education Student Statistics for the UK show that just over 777 000 students achieved undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications from universities from in 2018– and even more are about to graduate this year. 

Contrary to their expectations however, a CIPD Policy Report dated November 2017 has shown that only 52% of graduates find graduate-level jobs. 

Now exclusive research commissioned by Graduate Coach involving 1000 graduates aged 18-24 (from CV-Library’s database) has revealed for the first time why graduates say they struggle to find suitable graduate-level roles. 

Here are the three aspects of the recruitment process that graduates struggle with:

  1. Determining what job they should do
  2. Writing an effective CV
  3. Being successful in an interview

The research was commissioned by Graduate Coach, a company specialising in securing graduate-level jobs for candidates, which it has done for more than 500 graduates. 

The London-based business, with a decade of expertise in turning degrees into careers, reached their conclusions from research conducted via CV-Library. 

A massive 90% of respondents said they found it difficult to work out what job would suit them best. With around 1200 graduate job titles in existence, Graduate Coach experts say it is extremely difficult for students to pinpoint the titles and roles aligned to their skill set, interests and ambitions. 

And 86% of respondents said they find it difficult to create a good CV. Equally, 85% said they find interviews difficult and nerve-wracking. 
“Graduates struggle to put together an achievement-based CV because they focus on their lack of work experience,” said Chris Davies, founder of Graduate Coach.

“Instead, they should focus on the skills they have gained at university, through unpaid or voluntary work, or extracurricular activities. An outstanding CV and cover letter are crucial to catch an employer’s eye. There is an art and a science to doing it right, and candidates need expert guidance.” 

Female and male respondents gave similar answers to the first two issues, but when on interviews, men are generally more confident. Of the male respondents, 21.3% said they don’t find interviews difficult, as opposed to just 8.7% of women. 
“Being able to convey confidence at an interview is a must”, explained Davies. “If a candidate isn’t confident in themselves, why should the interviewer be?” 

Graduate Coach’s six-stage coaching programme guarantees employment for every candidate who signs up, with stages covering CV, cover letter and LinkedIn profile writing, applying for jobs, interview coaching and career mentoring. 

The founder Chris Davies, has published 2 books The Student Book, containing all you need to know to get the job you really want; and The Graduate Book, containing all you need to know to do really well at work. He has also created a wealth of informational videos on YouTube

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