Businesses may be inadvertently setting themselves up for failure by taking an overly rigid approach to their selection criteria when recruiting new employees.
While debate has raged recently about the employability of university graduates and the failure of graduates to enter the workforce with practical skills, My Business has heard from several people criticising businesses for overemphasising the importance of a degree in their recruitment process.
“Businesses ignore life skills and training acquired on the job, or in a person’s own time. Scour the employment section and I challenge you to find a mid-management white collar job that doesn’t stipulate applicants must possess a university degree,” said reader AJ in response to a story about an academic labelling students ‘lazy’.
“I followed my passion for writing and completed a journalism cadetship. Following this, I made a living as a sole contractor and, later, moved into consulting. Somehow, I am qualified to consult for firms that I’m not qualified to be employed by.”
The same reader also said that many businesses are overly reliant on the HR industry to source and hire new recruits, when they have no direct experience in the field for which they are hiring.
My Business also heard recently that a marketer was offered a $20,000 reduction in the advertised salary for a new position simply because, coming from a corporate background, he lacked agency experience.
Yet another point raised was that businesses can be shooting themselves in the foot by placing low-quality job advertisements, which in turn attract a lower quality or relevance of applicants.
Issues such as poor spelling and grammar in job ads, and the example of a business seeking staff in regional NSW but advertising in Melbourne CBD, may be putting off quality candidates because of a poor initial impression of the hiring business.
Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the publication’s editorial direction since early 2016.