Interview Coaching for Graduates on Transferrable Skills
Interview coaching is about developing your transferable skills. Research commissioned by the Edge Foundation has shed a clearer light on employers’ perceptions of the transferable skills that they think are advantageous for a newly graduated student to possess. This is good news for graduates who often believe that without relevant experience the job market is a bleak and lonely place.
This newly conducted research emphasises what Graduate Coach has always taught its students: demonstrate employability skills to companies in order to show them you are capable of doing a job for them and making a valuable contribution to an organisation.
The Edge Foundation found that employers valued a certain set of key skills that graduates should be able to demonstrate. These include: team working, problem solving, self-management, knowledge of the business, literacy and numeracy competence, ICT knowledge, leadership skills, and good interpersonal proficiencies. These interview skills can be developed by training yourself to think and talk about them.
Internships and work experience can help the process of interview coaching
Employers continually stressed, during the research process, the value of acquiring these skills through both extracurricular activities and, most importantly, through work placements, internships and work based experience. Employers were impressed by the effectiveness of these placements in providing students with the relevant employability skills, knowledge and awareness of employer cultures.
The other great concern among graduate employers, revealed through this research, was the lack of emphasis placed on employment by higher education institutions. The main reason for this is likely to be the inherent agendas of HEIs and the fact that providing experiential opportunities through HEIs requires a lot of time, effort and capital that most of them are unwilling to provide.
Access to job skills coaching is improving
However, with evidence, like that from the Sodexo University Lifestyle Survey, showing that 73% of students went to university primarily to improve their job opportunities, HEIs are beginning to place some emphasis on employability. Getting a good degree is only the start: you still need to develop general skills to convince an employer to invest in you.
At universities like Birmingham City, Portsmouth, Bath, Liverpool John Moores and many others, increasingly close links have been forged between careers advisers and the academic faculty. And if this trend is to continue, graduates might not emerge from university so clueless about the job market, but with an ability to prove that they can thrive in employment.