Every spring, as the school year ends, a new batch of college graduates sends out their resumes to businesses near and far in the hopes of landing their first job out of school. If you’re a business owner or hiring manager, chances are you receive an influx of job applications around this time of the year.
Some companies hesitate to employ new graduates due to their lack of experience or even their perceived unreliability—but there are just as many advantages to hiring a young professional, from affordability to fresh perspectives. To help you in your future hiring decisions, here are the pros and cons of hiring recent grads.
The Pros of Hiring New Graduates
1. They’re affordable
Salary is typically based on experience, so for startups and small businesses with smaller budgets, hiring recent graduates can be a good way to save money. A new graduate will request a lower starting salary than an experienced professional, and although you may have to invest more in their training, the cost will likely be offset by their lower wage.
2. They’re ambitious
New graduates are aware of how competitive the job market is. If hired, they are usually thankful for the opportunity and keen to make a good impression. Young professionals are eager to make themselves useful, excited to try new things, and often willing to work overtime hours. Even better, they may inject new life into your organization, as your current employees strive to match their energy and enthusiasm.
3. They’re easy to develop
Without the experience of working long term for another business, new graduates are a blank slate. This means they have few preconceived notions about and methods of doing things, and, having just come out of school, they’re still coachable and eager to learn. It can be easier to teach new habits than to coach a more experienced worker out of old habits and methods.
4. They offer new perspectives
New hires, particularly individuals fresh out of school, want to become good at their jobs. Younger generations aren’t afraid to question the status quo, and may not hesitate to ask why things are done the way they are, perhaps leading management to identify workplace inefficiencies and adopt new best practices.
Furthermore, someone fresh out of school will be up to date on the newest academic perspectives, methods, and technologies, and may be able to offer your organization a fresh outlook.
5. They’re skilled with technology
Speaking of technology, many of today’s young people are digital natives, meaning they’re early adopters of new technologies and adept at using it to enhance both their personal and their professional lives. With their help, you may be able to help reduce operational inefficiencies, improve workplace communications, and get older employees to both adopt and adapt to new methods of doing things.
The Cons of Hiring New Graduates
1. They require training
Every new employee needs to be onboarded properly and introduced to your company’s culture, but the training period may be longer and more intensive for recent graduates. While many young people already possess professional attributes, others may need a little more coaching in office protocol and etiquette, including proper workplace communication, workload management, and punctuality.
2. They lack skills and experience
Most college graduates have little to no industry experience, and it may take a while for them to build their skills and confidence. If you’re looking for someone to hit the ground running and make immediate or drastic changes to your organization, you may have to turn to a candidate with more experience.
3. They’re less engaged
A recent Gallup poll on millennial employment found that over 70% of millennials feel unengaged in the workplace. Click To Tweet Employee disengagement often leads to lower productivity, higher absenteeism, more safety incidents, poor customer service, and lower company profits. What’s more, one or two disengaged employees can negatively affect company culture.
Of course, this particular issue can be prevented. Working for a purpose is important to the millennial generation, and the same Gallup survey found that job clarity and being held accountable can improve employee engagement.
4. They may not want to settle
Gone are the days of building a career with one company. Today’s young people are more likely than previous generations to switch jobs, and even careers. In fact, the aforementioned 2016 Gallup poll found that 21% of millennials had changed jobs in the past year—three times the number of non-millennials—and 60% were currently open to a new job opportunity. As a result, even if a candidate expresses enthusiasm for the position and building a career, it’s a mistake to assume they will want to stay with your company forever.
Take the Risk
Some employers hesitate to hire candidates who are fresh out of school due to their lack of experience. But, if your business is growing and you’re looking to hire new employees, you might consider a recent graduate. Who knows—you might just hit the jackpot and find a recent grad with enough heart and hustle to make up for their lack of experience and become the next great addition to your team.
Have you hired a new graduate before?