1 in 3 fresh grad­u­ates got their first job in less than 6 months

Kuwait Times - - LOCAL -

Young job seek­ers and re­cent grad­u­ates con­tinue to en­ter the job mar­ket in the Mid­dle East and North Africa, com­pet­ing for en­try level jobs very ac­tively. Bayt.com - the Mid­dle East’s #1 Job Site - and YouGov - global on­line mar­ket re­search com­pany - re­cently con­ducted a sur­vey ti­tled “Fresh Grad­u­ates in the MENA”, in which more than two thirds of MENA re­spon­dents (69%) claimed that they found or plan to find their first job through lead­ing on­line job sites. Fur­ther, over one third (35%)of re­spon­dents in the MENA re­gion claim that they found their first job in less than six months.

Most at­trac­tive in­dus­tries

Over a quar­ter (26%) of re­spon­dents in the MENA re­gion said that the most ap­peal­ing in­dus­try for a ca­reer is Bank­ing/Fi­nance. This was closely fol­lowed by En­gi­neer­ing/De­sign (22%) and Busi­ness/ Con­sul­tancy (20%). When it came to which in­dus­tries re­spon­dents see hir­ing the highest num­ber of­fresh grad­u­ates in the MENA, al­most a quar­ter of them said Ad­ver­tis­ing/Mar­ket­ing (23%),one in five said Bank­ing/Fi­nance (20%), and 18% said Mil­i­tary/De­fense/Po­lice (18%).

When asked why re­spon­dents think these in­dus­tries em­ploy more fresh grad­u­ates com­pared to oth­ers, 42% said that these in­dus­tries be­lieve fresh grad­u­ates have “lower ex­pec­ta­tion on salary”. This was fol­lowed by 34% of re­spon­dents be­liev­ing that fresh grad­u­ates are “com­pli­ant and will­ing to fol­low in­struc­tions” and 28% who said that fresh grad­u­ates are “able to han­dle more chal­lenges”.

Salaries, ben­e­fits

When se­lect­ing a job in the MENA re­gion, be­ing pas­sion­ate about the job it­self emerged as the most im­por­tant fac­tor when se­lect­ing a job, ac­cord­ing to 44% ofre­spon­dents.9% said that salary was an im­por­tant fac­tor when se­lect­ing a job. An­other 7% of re­spon­dents also men­tioned that a “well known or­ga­ni­za­tion”, “op­por­tu­ni­ties for ca­reer pro­gres­sion” and “good rep­u­ta­tion for eth­i­cal prac­tices” are all im­por­tant at­tributes when se­lect­ing a job.

Salary ex­pec­ta­tions are var­ied in MENA, with30% of re­spon­dents say­ing that they re­ceived or would ex­pect to re­ceive a salary of up to $500 in their first job. An­other 22% of re­spon­dents said that they re­ceived or would ex­pect to re­ceive a salary be­tween $501 and 1,000 in their first job. 21% of re­spon­dents re­ceived or would ex­pect to re­ceive a salary be­tween $1,001 and 2,000. Only 9% said that they would ex­pect a salary of over $2,000 for their first job, while 17% said they don’t know or are not sure about their salary ex­pec­ta­tions. In ad­di­tion to a ba­sic salary, other ben­e­fits that re­spon­dents ex­pect the most in­clude per­sonal med­i­cal in­sur­ance (45%), train­ing /de­vel­op­ment al­lowance (36%), as well as hous­ing al­lowance/ com­pany pro­vided ac­com­mo­da­tion (33%).

Choos­ing a field of study

Al­most one in four re­spon­dents (24%) have stud­ied En­gi­neer­ing. Ac­count­ing/Fi­nance (18%), Busi­ness/Com­merce/Eco­nom­ics (16%), In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy/Com­puter Sci­ences (11%), and Sci­ences (9%) were also among the most pop­u­lar sub­jects. Over two thirds of fresh grad­u­ates (68%) in the MENA re­gion said that they con­sid­ered the avail­abil­ity of jobs in their po­ten­tial field be­fore de­cid­ing their ma­jor. On the other hand, less than one in three (32%) said they did not con­sider job avail­abil­ity prior to their de­ci­sion.

Re­spon­dents were asked if they be­lieve they would have fared bet­ter in the job mar­ket with a dif­fer­ent ma­jor or a dif­fer­ent school. While 44% said no, 28% said that they would have fared bet­ter with a dif­fer­ent ma­jor and 17% said that they would have fared bet­ter with a dif­fer­ent ma­jor and a dif­fer­ent school. When it came to whether there was a link be­tween the field re­spon­dents stud­ied and where they are em­ployed, sur­pris­ingly, more than four in 10 re­spon­dents (43%) said that they were not em­ployed in their field of study.

Role of Higher Ed­u­ca­tion

The ma­jor­ity (75%) of fresh grad­u­ates in the MENA re­gion said that they were very sat­is­fied or some­what sat­is­fied with the qual­ity of higher ed­u­ca­tion they had re­ceived. Only 15% said that they were some­what or very dis­sat­is­fied and the rest of re­spon­dents (9%) were neu­tral. How­ever, when it came to the role of higher ed­u­ca­tion in pre­par­ing stu­dents for their in­dus­try of choice, only 22% of MENA re­spon­dents said their uni­ver­sity helped “com­pletely”, 17% said it helped to “a large ex­tent”, and 34% said it helped “but only to some ex­tent”.

More than one in five (21%) said their uni­ver­sity didn’t help them in this as­pect, while the rest of the re­spon­dents (6%) didn’t give their opin­ion. Only 32% of fresh grad­u­ates in MENA claimed that they re­ceived help from their In­sti­tute to find job op­por­tu­ni­ties dur­ing their time as college stu­dents, while68% said they didn’t re­ceive any sup­port. For those who did re­ceive help, the most com­mon ways were “help with CV and Cover Let­ter writ­ing” (40%), “ca­reer fairs” (36%),”job an­nounce­ments” (34%) and “open days/cam­pus re­cruit­ment” (32%).

Fresh grad­u­ates

When asked what chal­lenges fresh grad­u­ates face most in the MENA re­gion, ‘find­ing a job’ emerged as the top chal­lenge (77%).This was fol­lowed by ‘sav­ing money’ (38%) and ‘dis­cov­er­ing what we want to do in life’ (35%). When re­spon­dents were search­ing for a job the great­est chal­lenges they faced in­cluded the fact that ‘em­ploy­ers were look­ing for can­di­dates with pre­vi­ous work ex­pe­ri­ence’ (51%), this was fol­lowed by the chal­lenge of ‘know­ing how to ap­proach the job search ef­fec­tively’ (38%) and know­ing ‘where to find rel­e­vant jobs’ (36%).

Suhail Masri, Vice Pres­i­dent of Em­ployer So­lu­tions, Bayt.com, said:”Fresh grad­u­ates seek­ing to se­cure their first job should take ad­van­tage of the nu­mer­ous en­try-level jobs, in­tern­ships, as well as in­for­ma­tion about the job mar­ket that Bayt.com reg­u­larly pro­vides. To­day, and on any given day, over 10,000 jobs are avail­able on our job site, nearly 5,000 of which are suit­able for young job seek­ers and fresh grad­u­ates.

For more than 17 years, we have been suc­cess­fully de­sign­ing so­lu­tions at Bayt.com to help em­ploy­ers find the most suit­able young tal­ent and help job seek­ers high­light their skills and gain more knowl­edge on how to ap­proach the job search ef­fec­tively.” Re­spon­dents also said that in­dus­tries are hes­i­tant in hir­ing fresh grad­u­ates be­cause they may lack the needed ex­pe­ri­ence (64%) as well as skills (34%).

Re­spon­dents com­mented on what skills they be­lieve are re­quired to ex­cel in the work­place, with more than half (59%) say­ing com­puter skills. This was fol­lowed by lin­guis­tic and com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills (36% each) aca­demic and tech­ni­cal skills (35%). Yet de­spite these chal­lenges for fresh grad­u­ates In the MENA re­gion, most of them are re­port­edly highly skilled. Al­most all re­spon­dents (91%) rated them­selves as “good” or “very good” when it comes to com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills. 90% rated them­selves as “good” or “very good” in flex­i­bil­ity/adapt­abil­ity to change, and 90% rated them­selves as “good” or “very good” in com­puter skills.

“Al­though fresh grad­u­ates are re­port­edly highly con­tent with the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion they re­ceived, it seems that their in­sti­tu­tions fell a bit short on pre­par­ing them for the job search, “said An­jali Ch­habra, Se­nior Re­search Man­ager, YouGov. “The sur­vey shows that fresh grad­u­ates are find­ing a lot of value in search­ing for a job on­line as they look for op­por­tu­ni­ties in a com­pet­i­tive and crowded job mar­ket.” Look­ing at the fu­ture, more than four in 10 re­spon­dents (42%) say they will keep look­ing un­til they find a job. 27% said that they will start look­ing for a job in an­other in­dus­try / job role of their choice. 15% will start look­ing for a job no mat­ter what in­dus­try / job role it is.

Four in 10 re­spon­dents (40%) re­main op­ti­mistic about their ca­reer and ed­u­ca­tional op­por­tu­ni­ties for their gen­er­a­tion com­pared to their par­ents’ gen­er­a­tion. 35% claimed that they are not op­ti­mistic and don’t be­lieve that their gen­er­a­tion has bet­ter op­por­tu­ni­ties. 25% were neu­tral or did not re­spond to this ques­tion. Data for the 2017 Bayt.com ‘Fresh Grad­u­ates in the MENA Sur­vey’ was col­lected on­line from June 21st to July 12th, 2017. Re­sults are based on a sam­ple of1,865 re­spon­dents. Coun­tries that par­tic­i­pated are the UAE, KSA, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Le­banon, Jor­dan, Egypt, Morocco, Al­ge­ria, Tu­nisia, and oth­ers.

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