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May 2018
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Apprentices

What Graduates Want – What is their 5 per Day?

Posted by: Vernon Bryce, Chief Commercial Officer, Capp.

 

Graduates are different, graduates are hungry, graduates know what they want. These are the many opinions floating around graduate recruitment and development.

 

In the AGR Student Development Conference (13 March 2014), research was presented to test out what exactly is the real data on what graduates want and need to engage their hearts, not just their brilliant minds. Also what is the smallest thing we can all do today to increase graduate engagement at work tomorrow?

 

Research shows 90% of grads feel they deserve their dream job, 80% want regular feedback from their managers, 70% want more ‘me time’ at work. There appears to be a lot of ‘me’ in the data, give me time, give me space, recognise and value me. So how does this compare with other generations of workers and indeed other Gen Y’s? The data shows less concern for customers, job security and reward than older generations, yet like Gen Y’s there are five big conditions to engage and retain them.

 

  • Recognition: more than other employees grads need very open regular feedback, being valued and very regularly is critical to them – or they will seek it elsewhere.
  • Reputation: they will work and engage with employers of high repute, more than other generations who needed / wanted job security, we have to prove our value to them.
  • Empowerment: this is about trusting grads to get on with important things – they will go the extra mile or ten for employers who give them large scope and long reach.
  • Communications: more than other employees they need more communications, they have a deep hunger to know what’s going on – so we need to feed this in specific ways.
  • Careers: it not the job they want it’s the ladder, and they want to see how older grads have really made good– like leaders who once were grads – learning from/working with them.

 

The opportunity is there for the taking, and as if to remind us what happens if we do not provide – there is a major drop, like a stone in grad engagement within a year or so of joining. Graduate engagement drops from typical highs of 70% or even 80% to lows of 50%-60% at best with all their other expectations performance and loyalty.

 

So what can be done? These opportunities are already nailed by many top grad recruiters. Whether by design, data or desirability, there are many great examples.

 

First, engage them early, pre-hire not post hire. Second, message your schemes high on regular recognition – show case studies of grads receiving internal awards from senior leaders, working with leaders, position the recognition your company is getting too, external awards for initiatives, innovation, growth, focussing on Talent for example. Third, give early responsibility, working on key senior high value projects imperative to the business yet match their strengths. Communicate within a social grad network so they learn and grow from others’ successes, so building a future social leaders network. Finally showcase extreme performance, positioning success and reputation of ex grad scheme employees.

 

These and the already many innovations in place we could all share are not just ‘good ideas’, they are practices that feed the few deep essentials that engage grad hearts and minds.

 

I you would like to discuss graduate recruitment and development further, please contact me directly on: Capp +44 (0) 2476 232 363 or Link In with me, send me an in-mail, and I’ll contact you: uk.linkedin.com/in/vernonbryce

 

Nicky Garcea, Chief Customer Officer, Capp and Vernon Bryce, Chief Commercial Officer, Capp presented ‘Engaging the Hearts and Minds of Graduates’ at the AGR Student Development Conference, 13 March 4014.

www.agr.org.uk

 

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Are apprentices the new graduates?

posted by: Amy Willocks, Consulting Psychologist, Capp

 

Capp attended the The AGR Development Conference on the 13th March and in a session chaired by Simon Reichwald (Director, Bright Futures) we got the rare opportunity to gain an insight into what makes the successful apprenticeships schemes currently running at PwC, IBM, HSBC and BT so successful. Throughout all four presentations there were some really strong themes emerging on the drivers, challenges and benefits of this new but rapidly growing talent market. For starters the number of apprentices recruited by all four of the organisations were not just growing, but doubling in number e.g. PwC are set to increase apprentice numbers from 60 to 120 this year and BT are looking to recruit 1000 more this year compared to only 250 graduates.

 

All four of the apprentice schemes were clearly driven by the fact that all the organisations recognised that university is not for everyone, especially with forever increasing university fees, so the apprentice scheme is a way to capture that talent rather than just letting it pass by. However, from the insights shared by all the speakers it is clear that the growth and continued investment in apprentice schemes is down to a lot more:

  • Performance – apprentices are keen and need challenge, BT have found apprentices offer better ROI.
  • Retention – For HSBC their current retention after the apprentice programme is 97% and BT’s retention rates of apprentices are 92% after 5 years, whereas they only retain 34% of graduates.
  • Impact apprentices have on the rest of business – whether it be increased opportunities for others e.g PwC junior managers having coaching and development responsibility of apprentices; or with BT the energy burst they bring through their questions and curiosity that spreads across the business.

 

The four speakers were also very frank about the common challenges faced when recruiting apprentices and the three key ones to watch out for are:

  • Communication, feedback and support is vital to make the scheme work – apprentices need that extra support to flourish in your organisation.
  • Identifying the right people for the apprentice scheme – you need to get the message out to that demographic through the right channels, with the right messages and above all that message needs to be incredibly sexy.
  • Rigorous assessment processes are required to identify the talent, but in assessing there is no need to place any focus on academics.
  • Metrics on social mobility – there is real interest in the collection of these and can provide you with something powerful you can shout about to promote your apprentice scheme

 

Conclusion:

Every organisation should have an apprentice scheme! Seriously though the case studies from these four organisations certainly sold this to be the case. Tap this talent and achieve the remarkable benefits discussed above, surely you would be silly not to?  For more information on how Capp can help with both graduate and apprentice schemes please contact me at amy.willcocks@capp.co  or alternatively call 02476 323 363.

 

Please also contact me to talk about Jobmi the new employability and recruitment platform from Capp, connecting young people and employers. www.jobmi.com

 

 

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