Employers look for personality, skill set when hiring students
Students are now winding up their high school and post-secondary education and getting ready to hit the pavement looking for job opportunities.
With almost half of Canadians employers (51 per cent) anticipating on hiring students or recent grads this year, it's good to know just what they are looking for in a candidate.
According to a survey by BMO Bank of Montreal, the candidate's personality trait came out on top with 30 per cent of business owners ranking this characteristic as the one of the most important qualities when selecting a new employee.
Steve Murphy, Senior Vice President, BMO Commercial Banking, says, "With so many students looking for employment, it's encouraging to see Canadian companies with a notable appetite to hire students or recent graduates.
"These organizations recognize that this group of Canadians offers a wealth of valuable traits and talents to the workforce."
A student's skill set took second place with employers surveyed, with 26 per cent indicating it as an important asset; followed by work experience (15 per cent).
References and recommendations were important to eight per cent when assessing junior job candidates.
Across the various sectors, skill set ranked top amongst employers in manufacturing, while the service sector preferred personality over the candidate's skill set.
Sal Guatieri, Senior Economist, BMO Capital Markets, says, "Employment among those in the graduate range of 20 - 24 has trended moderately higher since the recession.
"For popular summer jobs such as those in tourism, students or graduates might see less opportunity this summer due to the strong loonie, and Canadian shoppers keeping a tighter grip on their wallets. However, the expected upturn in U.S. demand should have a positive impact on Canada's economy and job prospects."
With a daughter who will be graduating this year, I welcome the news.
By Donna Donaldson, MSN Money
What do you think potential employers are looking for when hiring a recent graduate? Do you think that their credentials and education is important in landing that first job?
Posted by: Ken | May 27, 2021 5:46:05 PM
Good Research Donna!
As a small business owner myself I feel that credentials & proper education are equally important. However, more & more employers are replacing credentials with convenience as they overlook certain criteria to locate that special student! Since most students don't actually get the job of choice but are willing and able to work long hard hours employers tend to subconsciously focus on self help attitudes such as, how can you lower my workload? Of course who could blame them since every day is overwhelming even in a slow economy! Therefore as long as the student shows enthusiasm & promise, on the job training = credential equivalence!
Posted by: kevin | May 28, 2021 2:37:07 PM
I agree completely with this article..way too much emphasis is put on degrees, university, etc...i would take a kid out of high school with a personality over a Masters degree with no personality..you cant teach that stuff...
Posted by: Crista | May 28, 2021 4:10:33 PM
Ken and Kevin,
We could tell you are very uneducated. Education is very important. From learning how to spell properly to knowledge. Do you know what that is? So, you want high school morons who have personality over a student who studied hard and has the power of knowledge and can prove to be a valuable member of society. What a bunch of crap you are coming up with. Guess what? You can't be treated by a high school student when you get sick. You cannot have your children educated without a teacher and you cannot have a car without an engineer who created it.
No wonder the world is going down. The morons are leading it and they want to manipulate the masses easier. Those with high school diploma and a lot of personality. Boo Hoo!
Posted by: Ken | May 29, 2021 10:35:21 AM
We? Suggests that it took a few of you to review my comment in order to make a decision! However if you had of been well educated then you would have been able to understand that I am not implying that an education is not important. I am merely stating reality when it comes to hiring a student! I suggest that you review the article again with more of your friends & family in hope, little but some, that you redefine your input.
And yes I am well educated with a successful business. If you're looking for a job I suggest applying to the government where you only have to learn one phrase with four words.....
That's not my department!
Posted by: Steve | May 29, 2021 11:44:10 AM
Employers are cutting all their costs to the bone. Letting Senior higher salaried employees go before they are ready to retire. Cutting employee benefits. Eliminating Pension plans. Taking advantage of students by not paying them as interns. Outsourcing jobs to obtain cheap labour costs
If these trends continue in Canada no one will have any money to purchase any goods or services. What happened to a fair wage or salary earned for a fair day's work.
Government can't create employment although they really need to to maintain their tax base and provide current services including health benefits.
Current business is pursuing a zero sum strategy where no one will be a winner.