Is there an employment gap between employers and students?

Is there an employment gap between employers and students?

Summary: According to new research, companies expect students to have internships - but don't offer them, and social media background checks appear to be on the rise.

TOPICS: CXO, IT Employment

A new study by Millennial Branding,  a Gen-Y research and management consulting firm based in Boston, MA, and Experience Inc. has shed some interesting reflections on whether there is an employment gap between employer and student -- and also just how far background checks online are spreading.

Using a data pool of over 100,000 U.S. companies and 225 employers, the firm collated information  to uncover whether an "employment gap" exists between what companies expect, their business practices, sources of hire for the class of 2012, and whether students have the correct skill requirements to be attractive to employers.

Why are so many graduates currently unemployed? These findings may enlighten us as to some of the issues involved:

  • 91 percent of employers believe that students should have one or two internships before they graduate;
  • However, half of companies have not hired any interns in the last six months.
  • 79 percent of employers have hired 30 percent of interns or less;
  • Furthermore, 87 percent of companies think that internships on average are too short -- rather than two months, they believe it should be a minimum of three.

Dan Schawbel, Founder of Millennial Branding said:

"The expectation that having an internship can lead to a job no longer exists. Employers should hire their interns into full-time positions to save recruiting and training costs. Students should strive to have as many internships as possible before graduation and not rely on a single employer for a job offer."

The issue concerning STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is wide-ranging. There is a shortage of people that are equipped and trained to take on roles in these industries, and the rate of students opting for these choices is declining.

According to the survey, 34 percent are recruiting engineering and computer information systems, and only 18 percent are recruiting finance and accounting trainees. 47 percent said "it’s either hard or very hard" competing against other brands when hiring STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) talent -- possibly due to the overall shortage.

When employers do find the talent they're looking for, just how have they found it? It seems there may be a transition towards social network recruitment strategy -- as an incredibly high 83 percent of hiring has now come from social networking, whereas less than half (48 percent) now use job boards, and only 44 percent rely on referrals.

When social media recruitment takes place, 35 percent conduct background checks online -- if we compare this to ten years ago, it is reasonable to predict this will continue to increase. Out of the employers who admitted to this procedure, 42 percent use LinkedIn, 40 percent use Facebook, 15 percent use Google+ and only 2 percent use Twitter.

For more information, view the infographic below:

Topics: CXO, IT Employment

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  • All true

    I was rather shocked at how pretty much every entry level position requires quite a bit of work experience that few graduates could have. The worst thing is, it's not limited to full time work. I wasn't qualified for most of the [i]internships[/i] offered, even as a fourth year college student for the same reason. I got lucky and finally did find an internship. Half the people I graduated with haven't been so lucky.
    • That's what happened to me.

      Time after time, I'd go into the placement services office at the college, only to hear the corporate recruiter say, "Sorry, but we want someone with a couple of years experience". Sure, I probably should have paid more attention to the internship offerings... except that a) the college spent more time promoting their [i]post-graduate[/i] placement services rather than the internships, and b) I was already working to help pay my way through college & avoid driving my loans up.

      Of course, I later found out that the calculations they used for their "90% or more of our graduates have a job within 6 months of graduation" were somewhat misleading. For example, if you stopped looking for a job, they dropped you from their pool (which then increased their percentage)... and even if your job wasn't [b]exactly[/b] in your field, they would count it if you were hired within 6 months of graduation.

      But that's water under the bridge at this point.
  • HR amd mangment are Crazy

    Lest not forget what happening is increasing job requirements are inclding a STEM degrees for Blue Collar wage jobs. I seen technician jobs start at $12.00 to $14.00 I know many SMT operators make that much without a college degree. Yes there used to be a way a worker can get the experiences the employer needs, it call apprenticeship not make them go to four years of university occurre ten of thousands in lifetime debt for a crappy $12.00 gig.
  • Standard business practice

    This is just standard business practice.
    - Refuse to train employees.
    - Demand unrealistic experience/qualifications.
    - Complain to the Government that there is a skill shortage.
    - Demand compensation (paid for by the tax payer).
    - Import workers and underpay them (or offshore the business).
    - Award the BoD huge "performance" bonuses.
    - Repeat ad nauseam.
  • Happening in all industries it seems

    Business requires two+ years experience for an entry level job and no-one is willing to hire and train to get the staff they need. Doesn't just apply to interns but almost every vacancy you see for what should be an entry-level position, a shopping list of requirements and experience required for almost minimum wage. Employers claim they give priority to the soft skills, but try getting a job on academic knowledge and good soft skills alone........