Graduate jobs madness! Two thirds of firms say they CAN’T FILL their vacancies

Graduate jobs madnessBIG EMPLOYERS REPORT HUNDREDS OF SPARE PLACES… WHILE THOUSANDS OF GRADUATES ARE UNDER-EMPLOYED IN SHOPS AND CALL CENTRES

Two thirds of the UK’s biggest graduate employers say they are struggling to fill their vacancies for 2015 – because the applications they receive from graduates simply aren’t good enough. But is that really true – or are they being too demanding?

According to the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR), 65% of the UK’s big graduate employers have reported unfilled vacancies for 2015. Of the firms who said they were struggling to find applicants deserving of their graduate jobs, the average number of spare roles going begging was a whopping 45.

There are vacancies across all specialisms, with the highest percentages of vacancies in Accountancy (27%), IT (26%), Electrical/Electronic Engineering (20%) and Financial Management (18%). Members reported vacancies nationwide, and urged graduates to think about opportunities outside of London and the South East.

An average of 45 spare graduate jobs at 65% of big firms? This news will shock many Graduate Fog readers who are struggling to find great graduate jobs and are convinced that the problem is that there simply aren’t enough positions to go around. So what’s going on? Stephen Isherwood, Chief Executive of the AGR, proposed this theory:

“The job market for graduates is buoyant. Many employers are still recruiting for training schemes that will start this year. But students shouldn’t be complacent.

“Our AGR members have said that many candidates’ applications are not thought through. Employers are looking for a combination of skills, knowledge and attitude. Show why you want to work for the company and take the time to complete your application thoroughly – spelling mistakes don’t help.”

And despite repeated warnings to take great care over applications, Isherwood said graduates are still submitting sloppy applications.

In a LinkedIn post, he revealed that half of the firms that responded to the AGR’s survey had complained of poorly completed applications.

Graduate Fog is baffled by this news. Graduate unemployment – and under-employment – is still far too high for our liking. It seems crazy that there are so many great jobs going spare this year, while thousands of graduates are stuck doing low-paid work in coffee shops and call centres. Meanwhile, graduates are burdened with unprecedented levels of student debt they may never repay. How has this situation been allowed to happen – and what can be done to correct it? Are graduates really submitting sloppy applications – or are employers being too demanding?

* HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THESE UNFILLED GRADUATE JOBS?
Are candidates submitting shoddy applications? Or are employers too picky? What’s your reaction to the news that many big firms have 45 spare graduate vacancies? What do you think would improve this situation? Should universities do more to prepare students for the job market, or should employers hire on potential and invest more in training graduates when they start work?

Don’t forget to follow @GraduateFog on Twitter!