Anatomy of the Millennials’ Job Search market
This post is the second of a saga that will help Graduates managing their young careers and get the job they deserve. If you missed the first post “Graduates and Job Search Evolution: Adapt or Perish”, feel free to follow the previous link. Have a good read.
The Millennials’ Job Search market differs strongly from the precedent generations of Job Search environments. The time of when someone could find a job in a few days without careful planning and by simply reading the newspaper’s job ads is over. The globalization of the professional world has drastically increased the competition among both job seekers and job providers. Furthermore, the average worker no longer practices for one or two different firms their whole life but is more likely to work for dozens of companies in a lifetime career. Those are just two examples of forces that shape today’s Job Search market. The goal of this post is to discuss these factors further. And to determine how Graduates should adapt to them in order to optimize their chance of success in getting a job.
The first factor that shapes today’s Job Search market is globalization. In a world ruled by multinationals and paced by mergers and acquisitions, it is not surprising to see the average employee being relocated abroad every two years in one of the multiple subsidiaries of their company. And it is also very likely that job seekers and job hunters look for opportunities internationally more than locally. This phenomenon results in a drastic increase of professional immigration and makes current topics such as “brain drain” regularly hitting the headlines. But most importantly, the globalization of the job market is synonymous with an increased competition among candidates that lets no room for errors in job applications. Adler stresses this argument by saying that: “If you’re not a perfect match on skills and experiences, your resume is unlikely to even be read” (Adler, 2014).
2. Increase in staff turnover
The second factor shaping the current Job Search environment is the drastic increase in staff turnover. In today’s fast-paced and interconnected professional world, Pearce points out that: “There is no such thing as a permanent job anymore. Employment is fluid and employees are mobile (in more ways than one…). Social media has us all, and the workplace, in its thrall. The upshot is there is no choice involved in whether to invest effort or not into building your personal employee brand” (Pearce, 2015). The argument of Pearce is clear and underlines the importance for today’s employees to build their personal brand in order to be ready to find and change jobs regularly, whether it is their decision or not.
3. Raise of soft skills
The third element that is typical of today’s Job Search market is the rise of soft skills importance into the applicant’s profile evaluation. At first glance, and considering the increasing number of technologies to master for companies, it would make sense for recruiters to focus on applicants’ hard skills and especially on their new technology fluency. However, like Woodward thoughtfully underlines: “Interestingly, today’s technological scientific age has not reduced the importance of soft skills but has, if anything, increased it” (Woodward, 2014). The reasoning behind Woodward statement is that hard skills such as Codding or Social Media analytics can be learned fast after a hire. Which is not the case of soft skills that are built through experience. On this topic, Woodward adds that: “The only sustainable competitive advantage is an organization’s ability to learn faster than the competition. Companies learn faster when leaders model and message soft skill development within their teams” (Woodward, 2014). This stresses out that soft skills are not only hard to build, but are also the key factor to create successful teams; teams that are able to learn at the fast pace often required by today’s working environment.
4. New technologies
The fourth main factor shaping the face of the current Job Search market is, of course, the increasing use and importance of new technologies. In this new over-competitive and over-communicated Job Search environment, new technologies, and particularly Social Media, comes up as a tool for recruiters to filter hundreds of candidates daily. And applicants’ Social Media profiles now become potential trust (or mistrust) tokens. Adler stresses that trust plays more than ever an important role into the Job Search process and delivers these interesting study results: “A person who is referred to a recruiter from a trusted source is 20 times more likely to be considered than someone who responded to a job posting […] and a person whose resume or LinkedIn profile is found via a Google search is 5 times more likely to be considered than someone who applies directly to a job posting” (Adler, 2014). Brogan goes even further by saying that: “The web is such a powerful resource for leveraging contacts and presenting our strengths that a curriculum vitae becomes irrelevant. It’s not so much that you won’t need one, but that you’ll never be asked for a CV because you reputation will precede you” (Brogan, 2010, p. 16).
Whether or not the statement of Brogan is true or exaggerated will be one of the concerns in my next posts. But what is sure is that the current Job Search environment is very different from all the ones the precedent generations of job applicants and recruiters have known before. And consequently, both sides now have to adapt and find innovative solutions to optimize the results of their Job Search and Recruitment process.
#StudentVoices #SkillsforTomorrow #NewYearNewMe
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Adler, L. 2014, Why Responding to a Job Posting is a Waste of Time, LinkedIn Pulse, Available from: http://linkd.in/1G6PVpO. (Last accessed 08/2015).
Brogan, C. & Smith, J. (eds) 2010, Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust, John Wiley & Sons, Canada.
Pearce, C. 2015, The missing link in personal branding for employees, marketingmag.com.au, Available from: http://bit.ly/1KixeCw. (Last accessed 08/2015).
Woodward, O. 2014, Leadership Soft Skills: The Secret to Professional Advancement, LinkedIn Pulse, Available from: http://linkd.in/1HTUWjz. (Last accessed 08/2015).
Thanks for reading. Best regards,