Over two-thirds (67.3%) of final-year students have yet to secure employment, with one in five relying on friends and family to get them a job.
That’s according to UK student and graduate careers site, Magnet.me, whose findings from a recent of current students and 2017 graduates confirm a trend of earlier this year when only half of young people were succeeding in securing a role in 2018, with job optimism dropping from 65.6% in January 2017 to 53.1% in January 2018. Three-quarters (74.5%) cited lack of inspiration for UK economic signals, Brexit negotiations or political stability as reasons for the fall in optimism.
The new findings reveal that students are applying aggressively, making on average 92 applications each, but only one in twenty (5.8%) were achieving an interview. Of those who attended an interview, most (48.3%) felt it was an uncomfortable meeting in terms of approach and friendliness by recruiters. Furthermore, half (52.7%) felt there was a huge void between what the job description proposed, and the interview questions they faced.
Worryingly, one in five (22.4%) are relying on someone they know to help them get a job in 2018. Faith in the university careers service is dwindling, with over two-fifths (40.8%) claiming it was an out-of-date approach and lacked the necessary resources to support job search.
Vincent Karremans, founder of Magnet.me, commented: “It look like vast swathes of young people are unlikely to secure a job this year owing to floundering application processes and interview meetings.
“Young people are being frustrated and strangled by the world of work even before they enter it. They are applying to bland generic job descriptions and when they attend interviews are left feeling confused. Little wonder why then one in five are relying on friends and family to get them a job.
“Employers need to do improve their job descriptions and really spell out what they are looking for, avoiding unnecessary corporate jargon. Simultaneously, interviews and interview processes need to be revamped, they are clearly not working. A greater involvement of hiring managers early in the process will help to ensure better outcomes.”