Despite a growing trend of many entry-level employees needing at least a Bachelor’s Degree qualification, a recent study found that only around 70% of new graduates find full-time employment within four months of completing their education. Only 20% of these secured part-time or casual employment while continuing to seek full-time positions, and these jobs are not always in their chosen field, or even in the field that they were qualified in. The remaining 10% were not working, and were still seeking full time employment. So what can you do to improve your employability?
So what can you do to improve your employability? What’s This About Professional Development?
Ongoing in-house or external training and professional development tends to open up more opportunities for those seeking work or who are already employed but being tasked with responsibility outside of their experience. It can increase productivity for you and your employer, and open doors such as promotions. However how to pick the right course to obtain relevant and necessary skills?
You may be surprised to learn that many University courses that provide education for project-based sectors such as finance, construction, IT, civil engineering and architecture don’t generally include any project management subjects in the courses, leaving a practical skill gap in the delivery of the technical or functional area. Subsequently many graduates, those that are lucky enough to find relevant employment, wind up working or managing projects without possessing any of the practical skills required to do so effectively. This not only sets them individually up for high stress challenges and potentially career limiting failure, but also puts risk on the business budget and strategy. If you’re in this boat, then you may need to supplement your degree with a project and portfolio planning and management course to successfully captain your own career destiny. On the other hand, if you are a manager in a business in this sector and this story strikes a chord, then why not champion the need for expertly run in-house training programs on project management for new graduates joining the team or any other accidental project managers amongst your ranks?
What Types of Training Do Employers Value?
Employers value courses that are going to give them the best ROI.
Courses that are going to give them the best ROI are those that deliver practical skill sets to make you a more efficient employee, capable of dealing with bigger challenges. If you’re able to demonstrate your ability to deliver and deal with project challenges in an interview, post training or on the job, then your likelihood of career progression and success rises exponentially. Return on training investment, whether its out of your own pocket or incurred by the business, is demonstrated by your ability to dive headfirst into a new project with confidence and the capability to manage every aspect of it – including the inevitable hiccups on any typical time-budget-resource constrained project!
Role-playing and Simulation
Training programs that include workplace simulations deliver highly valuable and relevant learning’s and practically tested skills. Gamification or role-playing represents the leading edge of adult education, and provides a fun challenging and beneficial context for knowledge and skill acquisition. The recreation of real workplace scenarios gives you the skills necessary to respond to the various and inevitable changes that occur when working on large long projects in fast multi-faceted business environments. Scope changes can and will occur – timespans can balloon out, budgets can change and people can get injured, laid off, or quit their jobs. Being able to anticipate and deal with change effectively and efficiently manage the human resource element of any project is invaluable to any employer and in any field.
The Missing Piece on your CV?
If you are a recent graduate either seeking work or an accidental project manager thrown into the world of project without a map, then a course in applied project management could be the kick-start that you need. Employers are becoming increasingly aware of the need for practical skill sets that perfectly complement specialist qualifications.
Hopefully you now feel inspired to get out there and upgrade your capabilities!