How-to hire graduates in a dynamic market

May 22, 2023 | Home Featured, How-to, Sector & policy

Graduate recruiters have been forced to constantly adjust and readjust their hiring practices. HireVue explains how-to hire graduates in a dynamic market.

Although graduate job applications in the UK increased by 41% in 2022, there are still approximately 96,041 unemployed graduates each year in the UK. That’s a lot of talent that is not being reached and given an opportunity to showcase what it can do.

The bottom line? Graduate hiring teams are busy. And with large numbers of Gen Z entering the workforce, they’re not only busy trying to attract and engage new candidates. They are ensuring they’re doing so fairly while also meeting candidate expectations.

We’ve put together some tried and trusted methods to help you hire graduates in a dynamic market.

  1. Old practices won’t work for this new generation

Gen Z is a different generation with their own ideas and expectations of what they want their lives and employment to look like.

They’re a generation that grew up with technology, so they expect their future employers and hiring processes to have adapted to it as well (think mobile-friendly).

Graduate recruiters who rethink their hiring processes to address this new wave of expectations will find they can more effectively engage, hire, and create a workplace where candidates want to work.

  1. Assess skills, not CVs

For the first time, less than half of employers now stipulate applicants possess a 2:1 degree, and only 13% set a UCAS point minimum.

This signals that employers now place more focus on identifying skills and behaviours. They are also seeking to broaden the universities, colleges and schools they hire from (ISE Recruitment Survey).

Employers need to ask all candidates the same validated-questions, tied to competencies, based on roles. Assess them for the skills that actually predict job performance instead of relying on CVs, which can look very similar.

  1. Close the graduate communication gap

Unfortunately, graduate hiring has been notorious for long communication gaps. Candidates find long, outdated application processes incredibly frustrating.

Combine this with the current hiring surge and it’s no surprise teams are being ghosted by candidates.

Gen Z spends an average of 4 hours and 15 minutes a day on their phone, so it’s no surprise that early careers talent prefers a mobile-friendly recruitment process.

Be where your candidates are and use automation so that you can move quickly to engage, assess and hire the best graduates – all with a standout experience.

  1. No ifs, ands, or buts. Make your hiring fair

Gen Z decides between similar job offers based on which company is more purpose-driven, diverse and inclusive.

Graduates are also seeking companies that align with their values and they’re more likely to engage with an employer when they perceive the hiring process as fair. The truth is that hiring based on your ‘gut’ is often biased.

Support fairer hiring by incorporating assessments into your hiring that screen for potential and the soft skills that don’t always show up on a CV.

Traits like drive for results, initiative, adaptability, and conscientiousness better predict success than qualifications and experiences.

While the current landscape is trending in the right direction, there is still room for improvement in making hiring fair. Decisions backed by science mitigate unconscious bias and provide insight into candidate skills and potential.

HireVue’s short video shares tips from some of the world’s biggest brands, including Splunk and Prudential Financial, on how they engage, assess and hire top talent to support their DE&I outcomes.

Dr. Alan Bourne explains the warning signs that show whether your recruitment is biased.

For more best practice from industry practitioners, join HireVue, and The Co-operative Bank at the ISE Student Recruitment Conference. Their session ‘How the world’s first ethical bank brings its diversity values to life’ takes place on Tuesday 13 June at 14:40 – 15:25.

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