Today, youth and university graduates are stuck in a vicious Catch-22 cycle. Often told they need work experience to get the job (often for entry level jobs) or are told the work experience they do possess is not relevant to the advertised position. You can’t get the job without experience, yet you can’t get the relevant experience without getting the relevant type of job.
This Catch-22 is the crux of the problem and coupled with workforce casualisation and the new emphasis employers place on soft skills and job readiness straight out of university all combine to become a great source of frustration for university graduates, unemployed youth and the unemployed in general who cannot fathom why they just can’t get that job.
Let’s Take the Average, Entry-Level Office Administration Assistant Position for Example
When you need either previous experience in an admin capacity, or a Cert IV Business Certificate, or both, just to become a (casual, part, or full-time) entry level office assistant something is seriously eschew in the Australian business environment. Not to mention many of these positions expect you to undertake a business traineeship through them once hired. Many such office jobs treat this commitment as the norm these days even if you are only seeking casual office work.
So what’s Gone Wrong?
The proverbial has hit the fan, and government, business and educators are all pointing fingers. The problem is job creation and training is a shared responsibility of varying degrees between them. There is no, single, fool-proof solution.
What ever happened to universities preparing youth for the realities of the modern job market, to liaising with the business community to ensure sustainable in-demand courses are taught. What happened to the government incentivising employers to train our youth and general unemployed, our next generation of employees and employers? A combination of factors has led us down this path, but now is not the time for the blame-game; it’s time for a practical solution.
So Is There a Solution?
The latest Galaxy Poll commissioned by the Courier Mail and released on 13th April asked 800 people what the most important item on the LNP budget agenda should be when balancing the books on May 12th of this year. 58% of respondents placed most importance on job creation programs. What we are talking about are effective, knowledgeable, vital job creation programs which ready people for in-demand jobs, not flimsy, lip-service programs. It’s a beginning, but it’s only a small part of the solution.