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The state of employment

An interview with Ed Moran, General Manager Workforce Planning and People at Darlo.


What is the World of Work?

The World of Work is changing constantly, and rapidly. Traditional roles are becoming more fluid, where employers are looking for talent that can adapt, change and disrupt across the organisation. Additionally, employees want to be able to learn skills across the same arena. This is great news for graduates, who will be presented with many more opportunities than just the specialism that they are training in. For example, Academic Staff recently introduced a new law graduate to a company in the Education Industry that needed a Compliance Officer. So although the graduate trained to be a lawyer, she is now working in compliance across the entire company, learning much more that she expected.

Where is the Work?

The Department of Employment’s ‘Employment Outlook’ report was recently released. In this report it is estimated that total employment would increase by 1,166,400 (10%) to reach 12,776,500 by November 2019. It is also predicted that Healthcare, Education and Training, Construction, and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services would provide more than half of the employment growth to November 2019. Additionally it is forecasted that the labour market will continue to favour higher skilled workers (those with a Bachelor degree or higher), with an employment increase of 13.1% or 466,700.

What, in your experience, made the study-to-work transition easier?

Employment early, is key to success. Like many others, I was in employment whilst studying. Working with people, whether they are customers, suppliers or colleagues, has given me a great insight into peoples needs, motivations, passions and drivers. I also benefited from having a family friend who acted as a coach and mentor, particularly around workplace behaviours. She also encouraged me to volunteer some time in community charities, where I learnt a lot of different skills.

What do you think are the most important traits that employers look for in graduate students (from research to coursework)?

Graduates have an advantage over experienced candidates. They are coming from a learning background. Learning is the most important aspect of starting a new job, and graduates are really equipped for this. The trick is to take that mentality and apply it to the workforce, where decisions have to be made very quickly. Graduates should ensure that employers are able to see evidence of where learning has been applied in a practical environment.

A job interview can be a daunting experience, and without knowledge and preparation, it can be very stressful, leading to a negative experience. I worked with a law graduate recently and guided her through the ‘competency interview technique’. She’d never heard of it, and her feedback afterwards was ‘I wish we had learnt this whilst at university’. It is really important that graduates understand what employers are looking for in terms of both potential and character, and how graduates can demonstrate that at interview.

featured image: Kevin Jarrett / FlickrCC