Top Reasons to Hire Fresh Grads During the Pandemic5 min read

The Covid-19 pandemic has deeply affected the labour market, especially for fresh grads. Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower reported that the fall in employment was the sharpest on record. The number of retrenchments was also double that of the pre-pandemic period.

In this uncertain season, many businesses have turned to tightening their purse strings and postponing recruitment plans. But what if you need to hire to keep your business up and running? Or you want fresh talent to diversify your team and introduce innovative ideas? Here’s why you should look into hiring fresh grads in 2020 amidst the pandemic. 

1. They are an affordable talent pool

Fresh grads are undeniably cheaper to hire than professionals in the field who hold years worth of experience. These older employees may also expect unrealistically high asking prices. In contrast, market rates for fresh grads are not very high. Similarly, fresh grads are more willing to take a job at a median salary. 

Remote working or Work-From-Home (WFH) arrangements are likely to become the new normal now. Hiring fresh grads who are able to remote work- through methods such as offshoring– may mean that hiring costs will be even more affordable. This can keep your business cost low while increasing productivity. 

However, keep in mind this does not equate to hiring fresh grads at extremely low rates. Rather, you will be able to recruit new talent at entry-level rates. Then, invest in them to become valuable members of the team. 

Interested in offshoring? Glints has a range of wallet-friendly solutions that can make it a fuss-free process. See here to find out how. 

Related: 5 ways Singaporean employers can train fresh grad hires for success

2. They are constantly upgrading their skill sets through self-learning 

Those recently graduated from university are likely to have mindsets that are still open to new ideas, knowledge, and working styles. They are not afraid to ask questions, tackling a task wholeheartedly when given one. Moreover, young people are well-versed in the tech scene. They have a natural way around technology which gives them leverage over Internet resources. 

Covid-19 has not stopped the continuous learning that fresh grads love to engage in. In fact, more people than ever before are taking online courses to upgrade and upskill, including fresh grads who are eager to increase their employability. Coursera saw a 640% growth in enrollment from March to April compared to the same period in 2019. The exponential increase was partly due to giving free catalog access to university partners. This indicates that university graduates are more than eager to self learn and take charge of their own growth and development. 

3. They are enthusiastic and flexible

Employees with more working experience may be used to getting things done a certain way. Recent grads on the other hand are sometimes referred to as ‘blank canvases’ or ‘sponges’. This means they will be open to training and shaping to fit the role you are looking for. This flexibility is important as businesses change to cope in times of crisis. 

Fresh grads are also enthusiastic. Now; likely even more so, because of the tight labour market in 2020. According to the South China Morning Post, job vacancies for university graduates has more than halved. JobsDB reported that graduate job vacancies decreased by 55% compared to January to April last year. Knowing that getting a job is more challenging this year, new graduate hires will probably be grateful for the opportunities you are offering them, and strive to make a good impression on their teammates and supervisors. 

4. They are tech-savvy

Both millennials and older employees know that technology can heighten productivity at work. However, a MENA survey in 2014 indicates that 75% of respondents under 35 years old believe their older colleagues fail to take full advantage of the technology available. 

Younger employees can plug this gap. They are more likely to be up-to-date with tech trends, pick up new tools quickly, and integrate tech into the company workflow. An annual national graduate careers survey by GTI Media reported that local students and university graduates in Singapore desire careers in tech more than ever in 2020. Hence, many believe they have the skills, aptitude and passion for tech-related tasks- valuable resources in any company.

Fresh grads who grew up in the technological boom are savvy with any number of devices and platforms, including social media. If you are looking to establish a strong brand for your business, hiring a fresh grad would not be too far off the mark as they have a solid understanding of new media. As the digital becomes the default, it is important for your employees to know how to navigate technology well and effectively digitise your business or organization. Moreover, now when WFH is the de-facto arrangement for most businesses, onboarding will be less of a hassle to those already familiar with online working tools. 

Fresh grads will save you the trouble of teaching the necessary skills in tech, as well as create a diverse yet harmonious culture of peer-to-peer learning between the younger and less tech-inclined workers in the team.

Related: Employer Branding 101- how to attract fresh grads

5. They will resonate with your company mission, vision and values

Millennials want to join companies whose values and goals align with their personal convictions. The GTI Media survey also showed that almost 80% of graduates considered the moral and ethical dimension a significant aspect in choosing their employers. This illustrates how fresh grads principles hold strong when making early career decisions, despite the hard job climate this year. 

Millennials want to join companies whose values and goals align with their personal convictions. The GTI Media survey also showed that almost 80% of graduates considered the moral and ethical dimension a significant aspect in choosing their employers. This illustrates how fresh grads principles hold strong when making early career decisions, despite the hard job climate this year. 

Thus, graduates approaching your company for jobs have already done the evaluatory work and decided that they stand by the company’s core values. This means that you will be hiring new talent that truly believe in the goals of your business, pointing towards having a fresh team that wants to work hard and stay on for the long haul.