While several job listings advertise that fresh graduates are welcome to apply, more often than not, experience trumps eager youthfulness. There are several reasons for this, but here are the most commonly cited by employers:
- No time to train: Several companies cite training time as the main barrier in regards to hiring new blood. This is particularly so for a higher level or specialised post, where the learning curve is large. Having to invest time and patience in training up a fresh graduate may cause a back log in work, as they will take longer than an experienced person to handle tasks. It is also particularly frustrating when, after spending some time training a person, it turns out that they are either unsuitable or uncommitted and leave the company.
- Commitment issues: With youth also comes a certain naïveté and culture shock for some. They come with ideals and are not prepared for certain hard knocks. Their older counterparts however, have been round the block a few times and know what to expect. As such, they are able to take challenges in their stride and ride tough times out. Furthermore, a more mature employee also normally has other commitments which give them pause before opting for a change in employment, and are less prone to job- hopping.
- Economic climate: Everyone knows that Singapore is an aging population. And to encourage employers to hire those aged 50 and above, the government offers attractive benefits such as the SEC (Special Employment Credit) for companies that are able to do so.
That’s not to say that fresh graduates are constantly overlooked. There are factors where hiring from a younger pool is more suitable, such as for work that requires much longer hours or physical exertion. Some companies are also looking to hire younger candidates because mature workers have a much higher salary expectancy.
As with every situation, there are pros and cons. If you are a fresh graduate looking to increase your employability, there are several resources available online to help.
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