September 26, 2016

Have millennials turned their backs on graduate jobs?

Recent figures from the Association of Graduate Recruiters have revealed a sharp reduction in the number of graduate jobs available for the first time in four years. Whilst it is concerning that there has been a steep decline in a short time, many graduates are now looking for an alternative to the traditional world of work.

Paul Moran, Senior Lecturer in Strategy and Enterprise and Head of the Formation Zone for Entrepreneurs at GSM London, writes that “The millennial generation is looking for something different in the world of work, something less corporate and much more entrepreneurial in spirit.”

Today’s graduates are quite happy to embrace a lifestyle where the line between work and life is blurred and being flexible allows them to spot opportunities for new markets, products, and services. With higher tuition fees than previous generations, many students are now either in employment or starting and running their own businesses while at university.

The emergence of the “portfolio career” presents a challenge to traditional graduate schemes where employers invest in graduate talent to pipeline a loyal workforce, adding value to the company for many years to come.

David B. Audretsch has written about entrepreneurship in his article Knowledge spillovers and future jobs for IZA World of Labor. He writes that “The prospects for future job growth are likely to be diminished in countries that stubbornly stick with the traditional industries and sectors. By contrast, countries that shift to knowledge-based economic activity that focuses on innovation have the potential to generate sustainable, high-quality jobs.”

Related articles:
Knowledge spillovers and future jobs, by David B. Audretsch
Entrepreneurs and their impact on jobs and economic growth, by Alexander S. Kritikos
Do youths graduating in a recession incur permanent losses? by Bart Cockx