CIPD research reveals a gulf in expectations between young people and employers that is contributing to high levels of youth unemployment
There is a clear mismatch between employers’ expectations of young people during the recruitment process and young people’s understanding of what is expected of them. This is hindering young people’s access to the labour market, contributing to the high rates of youth unemployment (currently almost one in five 16-24 years old is unemployed*) and fuelling a ticking time bomb of skills shortages for UK businesses, who may be unwittingly limiting their access to this important and diverse pool of talent. These are the findings of the latest research from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), being launched today at a joint event with Business in the Community (BITC).
The report, Employers are from Mars, young people are from Venus: Addressing the young people/jobs mismatch, identifies a number of flash points that are hindering young people from finding work, including:
Many employers state that they require ‘experience’, even for relatively junior roles, which then creates a vicious cycle for those young people who do not have access to work opportunities. This also prevents businesses from taking advantage of a diverse talent pool and can result in paying above the odds for skills they could have honed internally.
A lack of feedback, or even acknowledgement, after applying for jobs is de-motivating and crushing the confidence of many young people. On the flipside, some employers are overwhelmed by a large volume of ‘scattergun’ applications from young people who have done nothing to research and tailor their applications to the specific role.
Selection and recruitment processes are often lengthy and not very transparent, meaning that young people have no idea about the stages involved or what they should do to prepare. This, and failure to tailor interviews for people who have no prior experience of work (currently only one in four employers report that they adapt their recruitment practices for young people**), often means that employers are left disappointed by a process that does not get the most out of young people. When polled, more than three quarters (77%) of frontline Jobcentre Plus staff felt that employers should adapt their recruitment practices to make them more youth friendly.
Poor careers advice and guidance in schools, coupled with a lack of support available to young people during the transition from education to work, means that many young people have little understanding of the world of work and don’t know where to turn to or how to improve their chances of finding a job.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor
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