With the job market for graduates being so competitive and students considering the value of doing a degree, what can we learn from talking to small businesses about their experiences of employing graduates?
A recent UK Government report, BIS Graduate Recruitment to SMEs, gives some useful insights. In summary:
- Graduates contribute to SME development
- Graduates are under-represented in SMEs
- SMEs do not see graduates as ‘a natural source of recruitment’
- Sector, business activity and type of owner influences preception of graduates value
- Graduate recruitment is incidental and through informal networks
- Working in SMEs exceed graduates expectations
- There is an employment gap …
So, what advice would be useful to a new graduate looking for their first job?
You might be unexpectedly valuable to your new employer and be pleasantly surprised in what you get out of it too.
But, how do you find the right business and make yourself known?
Why not start by getting your LinkedIn profile up-to-date and projecting the right image. Remember that 22% HR Directors check the social media profiles of candidates. Then use ‘advanced search’ to find the MD of the companies you are interested in and start your campaign! Remember to use your networks.
Professor Nigel Lockett FRSA
Professor of Enterprise at Leeds University Business School