The Australian job market is still running red hot, with unemployment at record lows and several industries experiencing significant shortages in available, skilled workers.
With employers increasingly having to look outside their usual sources to fill vacancies, new research from leading career platform Indeed suggests that recent graduates may be the ones set to gain from the buoyant employment market.
Also read: How to negotiate a pay rise in 2022
New research predicts more jobs for graduates
Indeed’s recent Graduate Outcomes Survey found that 49 per cent of graduate employers anticipated they would hire five or more graduates this year, compared to only 43 per cent in 2021.
Yahoo Finance spoke with Indeed Career Coach Sally McKibbon to find out more about what her organisation’s research could mean for recent graduates.
“Employers have indicated there are currently greater job prospects for promising graduates than they’ve experienced in years,” McKibbon said, outlining her belief that this was a direct result of the shortages in the job market for more experienced staff.
And it’s not just the traditional graduate employers that are increasing their intakes.
“Organisations who are struggling to fill vacancies or needing to do more with less resources, are recognising the value of opening up their recruitment to include graduates,” McKibbon said.
Her comments are an indication of how organisations are now considering applicants straight out of university for roles they would previously have filled with more experienced candidates, such is their inability to source the latter.
Opportunity to fast-track careers
An increasing number of graduate vacancies is not the only benefit young workers can expect from the current labour market shortages.
Those graduates already in positions could find their employers giving them increased responsibilities as talent shortages start to bite, allowing them to obtain more advanced skills sooner than many would have expected.
"Our research shows that 65 per cent of employers see opportunity for graduates to fast-track their careers in 2022,” McKibbon said.
"Unlike more experienced candidates, they often won’t have to unlearn old ways or bad habits, and are likely to be more attuned to learning new skills."
What to do to capitalise on the current market
So, is it inevitable that all graduates will be employed quickly on finishing their studies, and progress quickly through the career ladder?
Although market conditions are currently in employees' favour, it won’t last forever.
And most employers will expect a high calibre of graduate if they are to fast-track their career.
As a result, the need to stand out from the crowd is as important as ever and, in her role as career coach, McKibbon has some sound advice for graduate job seekers.
“Talk about your skills in interview and on your resume, including technical and soft skills such as communication, problem solving, creativity and adaptability," she said.
"If you can provide examples of when you’ve demonstrated these skills and the outcomes achieved where relevant, even better."
She goes on to explain that, given the flexibility employers often require in the current market, it’s also a good idea to highlight transferable skills where possible.
This is particularly relevant if you’re applying for roles within a different industry, as this may give you a competitive edge over other job seekers.
For those already in positions, obtaining professional qualifications relevant to your role is a great way to show your employer you are serious about your career, as well as enhancing the skills you are learning in your current role.
It's also possible that your employer may assist with the cost of these qualifications, given many organisations are now relying on more inexperienced staff to fulfil key duties.
Although getting a tertiary education is no guarantee of success in today's job market, it is clearly an indication to potential employers of a capacity to learn.
Given the shortages of experienced workers in many industries at present, this is a key skill in itself.
The career prospects for graduates and inexperienced employees look set to increase further in coming months, so don't be afraid to ask for more responsibility at work - your future self will thank you for it.