Getting on the job ladder is harder than it should be
Getting on the job ladder is harder than it should be

Getting on the job ladder is harder than it should be

I’m discovering just how tricky it is to bag a job after getting a degree

Perth College – A part of the University of The Highlands & Islands

I’ve recently completed a BSc Computing course at @PerthCollegeUHI and I’m now starting the long process of applying for jobs. The only problem is though, despite living in Edinburgh, I am actually struggling to find jobs in Web Development at my level.

Every job I seem to look at tells me ‘one to two years commercial experience’ (Yeah it would help if I could find a job to get that)or ‘history of developing applications and websites’ sometimes even ‘You should have knowledge in PHP (Tick), JavaScript (Tick), JQuery (Tick), SQL (Tick) and C# (Wait, what!?)’ — I never studied C# in College, we focused on Java. Some jobs are perfect right up until one of those points appears and which stage you go scream, go onto the next job listing and repeat.

It’s like trying to play Scrabble. You can have good a good move but can’t get it to fit the board.

It’s not that college hasn’t set me up for my job — I’m developing and maintaining websites on an almost daily basis but for free. Out of probably over 100 jobs I’ve seen so far I’ve applied for 5 and so far my success rate is 0 — I’ve not heard back from a single one, good or bad. It’s because of these requirements that I am struggling to find suitable jobs.

I find one that sounds right ‘Graduate Web Developer’, you need knowledge of PHP, Javascript, SQL and C#. Right next one then ‘PHP Developer’, you need knowledge of PHP, Javascript, SQL etc and a minimum of two years experience… F…

This is why so many graduates end up working in coffee shops and retail, because we’re struggling to find jobs. In April 2016 data revealed that;

“almost one in three, 31%, of all graduates are not doing graduate — or high-skilled — jobs”

This lack of graduates getting into high-skilled jobs that they have studied for three, four or maybe five years to get, is dubbed as the skills gap. A lot of graduates feel like employers expectations are unreachable for the level of skill they actually have. In my case I’m expected to have knowledge of C# or Photoshop for a graduate position, but I’d attribute those skills to a mid-level job.

Extra: When did a degree stop being enough to get a graduate job?

Everyone who has a degree has earned it — We’ve worked hard for three years or more to hopefully get a job doing what we really enjoy and we can do it well for having nearly no real world experience.

This issue has been around for years and will continue to exist until recruiters realise that the Skills Gap does exist, despite some publications saying it doesn’t. Make more of the requirements beneficial requirements and you’ll find your applicant rate will go up. I don’t feel like applying for a job that I have all but one of the skills for because it’ll waste the recruiters time or end me up in a job I can’t do and quit or get fired from.

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