Why graduate recruitment is putting graduates off

  January 11, 2017

We've all heard the stats – approximately 14% of graduate candidates will reject job offers from businesses, wasting time and money that many businesses simply don't have. The reasons postulated for this figure vary, some suggest it's just down to the fickle nature of millennials, many of whom will apply to several jobs at once and just keep dropping offers until they find one they like. Others suggest it's because they use one job offer to leverage a better wage from a company's competitor. But while this may be the case in some scenarios, businesses also need to face facts and admit that the current graduate recruitment process is simply not up to scratch: it is long, tiring and rarely meets the objectives of the business i.e. to find a suitable candidate who will remain with the business long term and contribute positively to outcomes.

For many of the 'big' companies graduate recruitment will start well before a graduate is even a graduate, meaning applicants don't even have a real grade to use to sell themselves, instead relying on 'expected results'. There's also so many rounds of applications in most cases, that a huge cohort of candidates give up before they even begin because it all seems so intimidating to a group of young individuals who have never had to face such scrutiny before. They are then often asked to prove that they have relevant 'business skills', which is incredibly hard when most have only ever held a summer job, and often don't really understand what 'business' is really about. If they are able to demonstrate this on their paper application they may be lucky enough to be invited to an on-site assessment centre where they are required to compete with their peers to prove themselves, despite probably not really understanding the job specification of the role they are applying for, followed by an interview where, let's face it, even the most seasoned employees can appear like they know nothing about their subject matter, because of the immense pressure they are put under.

If they get through all of this, then perhaps 13 weeks later they may get that elusive job offer, but by that time they have already found a different role with another company, or decided that the role wasn't right for them, or maybe simply lost interest.

The trouble with graduate recruitment is that there is no work history to go on, education can only tell you so much, and many young individuals are never going to excel at interview because frankly interviews are hard, and millennials haven't had much practice. This is why it's so easy to hire the wrong candidate, but to help remedy this businesses roll out a slew of assessment centres and activities to try and weed out the good from the bad, but this just adds on extra time and stress that many candidates would prefer to do without.

But what if graduate recruitment only took a matter of minutes, and candidates could be matched to jobs based on more than a simple job description and CV information? If companies could clearly state what type of person they are looking for, including personal values, strengths and academic companies, and then be matched with people who fit their criteria, then maybe fewer candidates would reject job offers, and more graduates would find work they actually enjoy and find fulfilling – and that is exactly what HappyWork is designed to do. Complete your job profile in just six minutes and we'll match you with the ideal candidates; we do all the hard work for you.