Jobs scarce as record numbers graduate

Updated: 2013-05-23 05:36

By Shi Jing in Shanghai (China Daily)

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 Jobs scarce as record numbers graduate

The Way to Work tour helps students find their ideal jobs. Provided to China Daily

Competition in the job market is expected to intensify this year as the number of fresh college graduates in China hits a record high this summer.

According to the Ministry of Education, the number of matriculating college students will reach nearly 7 million this year, 190,000 more than the total last year. At the same time, the ministry also found job vacancies are down 15 percent, according to a survey of 500 companies in February this year.

The international economic situation is equally bleak. According to local statistics, the unemployment rate among youth between the ages of 15 and 24 soared to more than 50 percent in Spain this year. The rate is as high as 35 percent in Italy, 25 percent in France, 20 percent in Australia and 15 percent in the United States.

In response to these challenges, leading human resources company Adecco Group has created the Way to Work tour to provide youth with professional training and career advice that will increase their chances of employment. It will also help them find more job opportunities via the group's free instructional workshops and training.

The Way to Work tour was simultaneously launched in more than 60 countries and regions on April 30. As part of the tour, Adecco is further developing a project called Around the World in 80 Jobs, during which 10 youth will have the opportunity to work in five different countries, filling a total of 80 positions.

The Way to Work tour event came to Shanghai Normal University in early May. In addition to offering students two positions at FESCO Adecco, senior experts in human resources gave them detailed explanations to pragmatic questions such as "Should you incorporate internship experience that is not related to the job you are applying for in your resume?" and "What should you answer when asked about your weaknesses during an interview?"

"For young people, their first job is very important. It does not matter how much the salary is, this job will influence their future career," said Charles Gao, director of Adecco Shanghai.

"A good company and a good job will give their professional career a solid foundation to build upon."

During the event, many students brought their resumes and sought advice from Adecco personnel. Experts gave professional tips as to how to prepare a resume that will impress human resource managers and how to excel in the first round of an interview, all of which are skills that are relevant to any student upon graduation.

Cao Jiawei, a senior student in geo-information systems at Shanghai Normal University, took part in the activity. FESCO Adecco experts provided helpful and practical advice, Cao said.

Jobs scarce as record numbers graduate

"They even advised us on what to wear for interviews. Fresh graduates usually overlook these details," he said.

FESCO Adecco experts also gave suggestions about salary negotiations, advising students not to request exact sums. The company's experts advised students to request salaries in accordance with market rates and employee performance, Cao said.

Students need to have comprehensive and accurate recruitment information to land an ideal job, said Yang Jianjun, director of a job placement program at Shanghai Jiaotong University.

Usually held between November and March, job fairs are one of the most important means of delivering this information, he said

"Those (job fairs) co-organized by universities and human resources companies provide ideal opportunities to college graduates."

FESCO Adecco's Way to Work tour event later arrived at the Zhejiang University of Science and Engineering in Hangzhou in mid-May to provide specific employment guidance to graduating students there.

(China Daily 05/23/2013 page15)