• Apprenticeships: A new way for corporate employers to attract talent

    May 18, 2017 by

    An apprenticeship is three things:

    • It’s a job
    • It’s education
    • It’s a great opportunity

    That’s according to Apprentice Washington, a Division of the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries. While apprenticeships are common in the trades, apprenticeships are also valuable ways for college students and recent college grads to add and learn new skills in just about any profession, including jobs in the corporate world.

    Apprentice Washington says: “There are apprenticeships for nearly any job you can imagine: From high-tech manufacturing to health care.”

    And that’s why employers looking to attract, recruit and retain talented workers, should consider the benefits of implementing an apprenticeship program, or hiring apprentices.

    Apprenticeships are making a worldwide comeback

    Apprenticeships are suddenly popular in the United Kingdom because the government recently implemented a new tax on corporations which requires corporations to pay a “use it or lose it” tax that can be used to train apprentices, therefore incentivizing corporations to hire apprentices, or to turn current employees into apprentices through learning and development contracts.

    “I believe this is one of the largest changes to workforce planning in many years in the UK,” says Ilona Jurkiewicz, head of the Early Careers Program at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm. In her role with the Early Careers Program at Thomson Reuters, Jurkiewicz leads internal and external strategy for how Thomson Reuters attracts, assesses, develops, engages, and retains early career talent, including those completing apprenticeships. “And, although this feels like a seismic shift, apprentice strategies are in place in a number of countries already and commonly used, for example, in Germany, France, and Australia.”

    In May, Government Canada announced plans to invest $85 million in apprenticeship programs. And now, United States business leaders are starting to take note. On May 16, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $4.2 Million in federal funding was secured to expand New York’s apprenticeship program. Forbes’ recently wrote that it’s time for America to expand the modern Apprenticeship, stating that “calls for the U.S. to expand apprenticeship programs seem to be gaining more traction daily.” This is backed by news that the Trump Administration has plans to adopt a nationwide target to hire five million apprenticeships in five years. Hertz, Sears, CVS Health, WalMart, and Enterprise Rent-A-Car are among five large U.S. employers who already have apprenticeship programs in place.

    John Ladd, Administrator at the USDOL/ETA Office of Apprenticeship, is fired up about the role apprenticeships can play in today’s workforce, saying “apprenticeship is big-tent business, and the tent continues to expand. It’s drawing in new champions from the business and philanthropic communities every day, linking their resources to those of state and local workforce agencies, education partners like community colleges and school districts, industry associations, unions and other apprenticeship sponsors.”

    The approach is aggressive. And that should be a welcomed approach for employers seeking alternative methods to finding skilled workers in both the trades, and corporate world.

    “We need more pathways for job seekers, and as the world realizes that diversity of background and approach is important, I believe apprenticeships will become a more viable and available opportunity for students,” says Jurkiewicz.

    How one employer benefits from an apprenticeship program

    Growing Leaders is a global nonprofit that encourages and equips young adults to take on real-life opportunities and challenges in the classroom, in their careers, and in the community. The company implemented an apprenticeship program for recent college grads, citing the opportunity to live out the company’s internal values to train up the next generation of leaders.

    “Some view this next generation as a problem, we view them as a solution,” says Tim Elmore, President of Growing Leaders, and author of Marching Off The Map, which provides understanding and how to practically apply the latest research on Generation Z.

    Apprentices gain a chance to invest further in a set of skills (project management, selling, customer service) or in a function (marketing, operations, sales), said Elmore.

    “Depending on the apprenticeship, it can also give the student quantifiable results that he or she contributed to,” added Elmore.

    It also gives the employer a chance to train the employee their way, and also, try before they buy – similar to an internship – where they can determine if an apprentice is the right fit for a full-time job.

    “An apprenticeship allows more time to train a new graduate before they enter a full time position, and allows a trial period to see if he or she would be a good fit on our team,” says Elmore.

    What exactly is an apprenticeship?

    In simple terms, an apprentice is someone learning a skill, says Jurkiewicz. An apprentice can be someone just starting their career, or learning a trade, or someone like a recent college grad at the beginning of their career and entering the world of work. An apprentice can even be an experienced professional working towards an advanced degree or certification.

    What employers need to know about apprenticeships

    • Apprenticeships are often paid
    • Apprenticeships vary in length, so it tends to be driven by type of apprenticeship you are implementing and then the way the person is learning.
    • Employers often implement one off apprenticeships (hiring an individual for a specific role), as well as more programmatic approaches (a full apprenticeship program, with set criteria, similar to an internship program).

    An apprenticeship is unique and different from an internship or internship program. During an apprenticeship, there is a formal or informal contract between the apprentice, an employer, and sometimes a certifying body (a university or education body) through which the apprenticeship is attaining skills, says Jurkiewicz. At Growing Leaders the apprentice commits to an eight to 12 month apprenticeship, versus say a summer internship, which may be three or four months.

    “At the end of an apprenticeship, a student will have a more in-depth understanding of a certain function of business and clearer picture of how an organization operates,” says Elmore.

    The long-term benefits of apprenticeships for employers

    The reality is, not every college graduate is equipped with the right skills needed to succeed in the real world. Whether it’s soft skills, technical skills, communication skills, or the ability work with a diverse workforce that spans across generations. When an employer hires an apprentice, they are dedicated to providing further on-the-job training, while being able to mold the employee to fit their needs. While that seems to benefit the job seeker, it also benefits the employer, because it helps them create a pipeline of talent that could eventually be hired into a full-time role. If hired, these college grads are already familiar with the company, business, products, services, clients, and colleagues. They can move right into a full-time role, saving time on training and reducing time spent recruiting.

    “Businesses gain by having an on-boarding pathway to find stellar graduates who can offer up their gifts and talents to help an organization succeed,” says Elmore. “Millennials are the largest generation in the workplace and those organizations who can succeed in leading them well will have the upper hand. Apprenticeships literally give an organization a chance to observe a new, young professional at little cost.”

    Want more information on apprenticeships? Stay connected to College Recruiter by visiting our blog, and connect with us on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

  • 10 strategies December college graduates should follow for job search success

    December 27, 2016 by

     

    As 2016 comes to a close many college students have now handed in their final paper, taken the last exam of their collegiate careers and entered the job market. But according to a study of 503 entry-level job seekers by national career matchmaking firm GradStaff, recent college grads seem largely unaware of career opportunities and unsure of how to apply their skills in the workforce.  So what strategies can December college grads put into action now to create results that land a job? Start by following these 10 strategies for success.

    1. Develop a strong value proposition: Start by developing a strong value proposition and identifying those important soft and transferrable skills, says Bob LaBombard, CEO of GradStaff, a company that serves as a career matchmaker for recent college graduates, and companies that are looking to fill entry-level jobs.

    “These soft skills – such as critical thinking, effective communication, time management and leadership – are in high demand among prospective employers,” says LaBombard. “Grads should consider how and where they’ve applied these skills during college, whether in classes or extracurricular activities, or in non-professional jobs, including restaurant and retail service positions.”

    2. Sell what you want to do next: Next, be prepared to talk about what it is you want to do now that you are graduated.  Everyone that you know, run into, or talk to, is going to congratulate you on graduating, then ask “what’s next?” or “what do you want to do now?” The “I’ll take anything” approach is not a good option, says Kathleen I. Powell, Associate Vice President for Career Development at The College of William & Mary, and President, National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). Case in point, if you tell someone you’ll take anything, it’s hard for that person to find “anything.”

    But…

    “If you tell someone you’re interested in arts management, accounting, psychology, now you’ve given that person an area to focus on and they can start thinking of contacts in their networks,” says Powell.

    3. Casual conversations can lead to opportunities: Don’t blow off those casual conversations with friends, family members – that wacky uncle just may be well-connected in an industry where you want to work and be able to point you to a job opening, a mentor, or someone with whom you can set up an informational interview. Members of your church, social networks, parents of high school friends, relatives of your significant other, when they ask “what’s next” they are generally interested – so be prepared to effectively sell your excitement of what you want to do next. That’s the only way they can possibly help you, by knowing what you truly want to do.

    4. Network, network, network: Because, it really is about networking. Recent ADP employment reports show the bulk of all new job growth – often as much as 70-80 percent in a given month – is driven by small and mid-sized businesses. “These companies often don’t have the resources to recruit on campus, and tend to rely on referrals from employees, clients, vendors and other partners to identify candidates,” says LaBombard. “As a result, personal networking is critical. All entry-level job seekers should seize opportunities to ask parents, teachers, friends, clergy and even former employers for connections in industries of interest, and they should continue engaging with professional associations, alumni groups and others for face-to-face networking opportunities.”

    LaBombard offers these additional tips:

    Continue Reading

  • Ask Matt: 8 things college seniors should do now to land a job before graduation [video]

    December 22, 2016 by

     

    Dear Matt: I’m heading into the home stretch of my senior year of college, and have one semester left until graduation. A few classmates have already secured jobs that they will start soon after graduation. It made me realize that I too, should start the job search now. What tips do you have for college seniors who want to try and secure a job before graduation? What are those who get hired now doing to stand out and impress employers? Please share any tips and advice you can so I can start a job search and hopefully get hired before graduation! 

    Matt: The senior year can be challenging for college students. And, for many, simply graduating is a major accomplishment. But the excitement of earning a college degree can quickly fade when there is no internship or job lined up after graduating. The reality is, most college seniors graduate without a job lined up. At the same time, there are also many who do graduate with a job lined up.

    So how do they do it? What’s the secret to securing a job before graduation? What can college seniors do today to pay off tomorrow?

    First, don’t panic, says Beth Hendler-Grunt, President of Next Great Step, a company that advises college students and recent grads on how to achieve career success.

    “Your classmates may be telling you about the great job offer they secured upon graduation, and you may feel like the only one without your career figured out,” says Hendler-Grunt.

    But there’s no need to worry.

    “Most college students do not know what they are doing after they receive their diploma,” says Hendler-Grunt.

    To secure a job before graduation it’s going to take hard work, diligence, and some outside-the-box thinking.

    Start by assessing what you want to do after graduation, and then learn what you truly need to do to make it happen. Follow these tips from Hendler-Grunt: Continue Reading

  • How traveling abroad after college can help you land your first job [infographic]

    October 31, 2016 by

     

    Are you thinking about traveling abroad after college, but you worry about entering the working world one year later? Don’t worry! In fact, traveling the world will help you acquire some very necessary skills to get your first job. While having fun and exploring new cultures, you will learn things you wouldn’t otherwise. And when you are back from your adventures, you can make travel look good on your resume and in an interview. Here are six ways to take advantage of your traveling experiences and stay on track to launch your career:

    1. Take time to reflect
    Knowing what you want to do straight after graduation can be quite challenging. Before making this important decision, it may be beneficial to take some time off to travel abroad and analyze the future of your career from a different perspective. Traveling will give you the chance to disconnect from your daily routine and have time for yourself to consider the different options.

    2. Volunteer
    If you have just finished college, you may not have any working experience yet. But that is not a problem! You can do some volunteering work while traveling; it will be easier than you think. You can choose some fantastic volunteering programs at GoAbroad.com based on the country you want to visit, the causes you care about and the duration you have in mind.

    Volunteering abroad will look exceptional on your resume and will help you to stand out from the competition. Employers will highly value your commitment, responsibility, and devotion.

    3. Grasp a new language
    Being able to communicate with international business is increasingly important in the workforce. Speaking a second language will broaden up your career prospects, and it may impact your overall earnings. In the United States, Spanish is the second most-spoken language, and it may help you not only to get a job in the customer service industry but also in many B2B career opportunities. Furthermore, languages like Mandarin and Arabic are becoming extremely useful in international business, and there is a lack of Americans who are bilingual in these two languages.

    There are different ways you can learn a new language while traveling abroad after college. Some suggestions are: attend a short course in your destination country, enroll in an online language course, stay with a local host, chat to locals, read the papers, watch original version films with subtitles and download the dictionary app that best works for you. Even if you don’t become fluent in a new language, you will learn the basics, and that effort and knowledge are valued by hiring managers. Include your language skills on your resume to show you are a curious person, always trying to learn more and go the extra mile.

    4. Build organizational skills
    Traveling, just like business, requires a lot of organization. You will gain a set of skills that you will find highly useful later on in your career, including:

    • Managing budgets like a pro. If you run out of money too soon, your adventure is over!
    • Becoming more adaptable and flexible. If your original plans change, you need to be prepared for what is next.
    • Getting better and faster at problem-solving. If you get lost, for example, you may need to be able to read a complex map or get instructions and follow them correctly.
    • Being responsible for your own decisions. When you are on the road, you are constantly making decisions that will affect your travels. If for instance, you decide to take a bus instead of a train and it takes longer than expected, you will have less time to spend at your destination.

    Overall, you will return from your adventure being a more mature and experienced person.

    5. International networking
    Take this opportunity to meet as many people as you can. Engaging with people from other cultures and backgrounds will enrich you as a person and will help you see life from different angles. Talk to locals and other travelers; you may find people abroad who are interested in your industry, and you never know who will recommend you in the future or where will you meet your next employer! Connecting with them on social media networks may be a good idea to stay in touch in the future.

    6. Start a blog
    Starting your own travel blog is the best way to put together your traveling experiences and tell the world. The benefits of starting a blog while traveling are endless: improve your writing skills, get better at photography and video, learn about online marketing, social media management, search engine optimization, develop relationships with other bloggers and so on.

    All the abilities acquired creating a blog will help you land your first job even if it is in a completely different area. Your blogging capabilities will make you better at communicating, working faster and being more efficient. All appreciated skills for any job position.

    If you are still in two minds about traveling abroad after college, talk to other people you know who have done it before. You will find out that nobody regrets having such a profound experience.

    This infographic comes from Essay Writing Service UK:

    Traveling after college is a viable option

    Maria Onzainmaria-onzain is a content marketing expert writing for Open Colleges about education, career, and productivity. She is passionate about all things digital, loves technology, social media, start-ups, travelling, and good food. Connect with Maria on LinkedIn

     

     

     

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