Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

New 'Matchmaking' Model Helps St. Louis Grads Find Jobs

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

New 'Matchmaking' Model Helps St. Louis Grads Find Jobs

Article excerpt

When Elizabeth graduated from Truman State in May 2014, she didn't have a job and frankly didn't know what jobs would fit her skills and abilities. What's more, she had a lot of questions about how to conduct a job search.

When Elizabeth applied with us, she was like a lot of new grads. She was bright and motivated, but lacked an understanding of what value she brought to the workforce and what employers would have an interest in her background. As chief operating officer of GradStaff Inc., a firm specializing in matching new college grads with entry- level career opportunities, I see stories like this every day.

According to GradStaff's research, she's not alone. Only about 20 percent of graduating seniors actively use career services during their senior years. Further, 60 percent to 70 percent of new grads don't know where their education and skills fit in the workforce. Combine these stats with the fact that over 75 percent of new jobs are created by employers of 500 employees or less, who typically don't interview on campus, and it's easy to see that the entry- level job market is highly inefficient.

The net result is that fewer than 30 percent of graduating seniors have a professional job at graduation.

Based on working with both hiring companies and college career services professionals, we know that the larger companies that typically dominate college recruiting significantly reduced on- campus visits recruiting after the recession. Rather, college recruiting is much more targeted, and advances in technology have made direct interaction with college students much easier. For example, initial contacts are often made through social media and interviews are often completed using video interviewing techniques.

Further, corporate college recruiters are also focused on high- demand majors in computer science, mathematics and engineering or high performers in other majors with high GPAs knowing that the majority of college grads can be easily hired through conventional recruiting methods after they graduate.

Yes, college recruiting is much different now than when I graduated in 2000 from Southeast Missouri State University. …

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