Positive signs of growth in the jobs market
Recent figures are showing promising signs for job prospects in the UK, with more employers indicating they will take on full time staff over the coming quarter.
74% of employers have said that they are likely to take on full time staff during the second quarter of 2015 as the economy slowly improves and businesses start to expand their operations.
This is coupled with the fact that all major sectors have seen year on year growth, which bodes well for a spread of jobs for graduates, whichever sector they choose to work in.
However, the positive news is joined by employer’s concerns about a skills shortage and the demand for more vocational qualifications, rather than just academic degrees.
Unemployment has fallen to 5.6% compared to 6.9% recorded in the previous year – encouraging news for jobseekers.
For many universities the employability of their students is of increasing importance and has moved right to the top of the agenda for many institutions in higher education.
Students expect their university to provide a sound academic education – that is a given – but students also expect to leave university a more employable individual – well prepared to provide potential employers what they are seeking.
That means more work experience, more careers coaching and, crucially, more exposure to employers. Many educational institutions have some sort of relationship with business partners, but are they doing enough to link those potential employers with their student base?
Malcolm Paice, COO at Keystone Employment Group told LINK: “ We are increasingly seeing a very clear need to help universities, students and business partners work together to ensure students leave their educational life with the skills employers are looking for. That is precisely where our Talent Bank solution comes in, providing a university with an in- house online portal where employers can offer their students work experience, coaching and, eventually work placements. For the universities this gives them a turn-key solution to improving the employability of their students whilst also creating a low cost inhouse recruitment service.”
Simply put, a degree is no longer enough to secure a student’s chances of landing a job and employers are increasingly selecting graduates who can demonstrate they have the working skill sets their organisation seeks. Universities have a crucial role to play in arming students with these skills.
Why a Talent Bank works
With so many universities and educational institutions choosing a Talent Bank solution to solve several problems in one fell swoop a common questions is how and why does a Talent Bank solution work?
Firstly, it’s worth remembering that a university is in itself a large employer and an organisation that needs to be able to take on temporary and permanent staff without incurring hefty agency fees (which also often attract VAT which many institutions cannot claim back). There are currently just under 400,000 people employed in the higher education sector, and that means there is a steady flow of recruitment taking place. The first thing that a Talent Bank solution from Keystone provides is an in-house recruitment portal that instantly reduces the cost of that recruitment.
Secondly, that same online solution also means that a college or university can offer all its work placements (whether voluntary, paid, part time, full time or simply a brief assignment) to their students – in one move saving on recruitment fees whilst also offering their students much needed work experience.
This functionality also means that third party business partners-company employers- can also offer opportunities to an institution’s student base- an invaluable way of directly linking employers to students.
Finally, a Talent Bank provides the students with a secure, referenced and verifiable record of their academic and vocational skills- something one employer.
Real cost savings for universities
Money’s too tight to mention- or so the song goes – and with funding an ongoing battle for so many in higher education it is essential to make sure that any potential savings can be realised – but without harming the
institution’s day to day operation.
One leading London university will be saving over £600,000 this year, thanks to implementing a Talent Bank solution from Keystone Employment Group.
How is this saving achieved? Firstly by reducing the reliance on third party recruitment services, which of course attract VAT, which cannot be reclaimed by the majority of universities. With Keystone Talent Bank
providing the university with the means of doing more of its recruitment and employment services ‘in-house’ the need for external services is dramatically reduced- usually removed altogether.
With many recruitment agencies still charging a sizeable margin on their services (traditionally a percentage of the workers’ salary) there is a considerable and immediate saving to be made by moving to a Talent Bank solution. Easy to save money when you know how!
Keystone Employment Group is a fully approved supplier to the LUPC and SUPC purchasing framework agreements.
To find out more please contact us:
Or call us on: 0844 225 1010
Or come to see us! We’re talking at the PlaceNet Conference in Bournemouth on Thursday 21st May – See you there!