There is not a single sector of life that has been unaffected by the pandemic, but it is hard to imagine what the last year or so has been like for students at colleges and universities. Whether it’s going through lockdown in your first-year halls of residence or discussing your PhD with your supervisor on video calls from your parents’ kitchen rather than over a coffee in person, there has been a huge amount of disruption. But it’s the “looking for employment” stage that may be creating a little more cause for concern. Here’s how things stand for graduates and their employers.
The Office Workplace May Be A Thing Of The Past
One of the biggest changes facing graduates starting their first job is that their first day in the office will almost certainly be their first day in their home office. Although lockdown restrictions are lifting across Europe, many businesses will be continuing to work remotely for the foreseeable future.
The good news is that graduates will generally require less time to acclimatise to this than veteran employees. There are no habits that will need to be broken and working remotely has had the positive effect of making more senior figures in businesses more accessible than they were previously.
Tech Aptitude Is More Important Than Ever
Think about how many businesses will have been struggling to get to grips with creating a typical workday environment for their team from home. How many of those will have been able to utilise the latest tech to keep their businesses moving forward, not just keep their heads above water?
Having a demonstrable understanding of tech ranging from project management software to social media will be a huge asset to businesses looking to make new hires. For example, AI technology has been at the forefront of so much discussion in the past twelve months, but many business leaders are still getting to grips with its application. An artificial intelligence short course can give both graduates and their employers a grounding in its implications as well as uses.
Things Are Still Incredibly Competitive
We all remember the stories from last year about the incredible numbers of people applying for entry level jobs. Well, the good news is that businesses are hiring again, and the job market is looking a lot better than it did this time last year. However, graduates who are getting ready to make their leap into the world of work should anticipate fierce competition.
As an inevitable result of all the financial difficulties of 2020, there is not only a sizeable chunk of last year’s graduating class to tough it out against, but the legions of people who were made redundant during the pandemic. That means that graduates will be going up against people with years of experience, and businesses will pick and choose as to which they believe is more important to them. So, once again, any tech skills will be a tremendous bit of leverage for people looking to get their foot in the door.