This is a guest post by Dr Uma Ganesh, she has an MBA degree from the Faculty of Management Studies,
Demystifying Employer's Expectations
When fresher's start looking out for the right employment opportunities, it is important to know what the employers are looking for rather than blindly applying to various organizations. The expectations of the employers are never static, they keep changing based on the emerging business landscape including the expectations of their own customers. Here are some of the myths and realities about Employer's expectations from fresher's that would help you in launching yourself into a suitable career:
# Myth 1 Recognized degree or a PG qualification is the most important pre-requisite for employment
While a degree is certainly a good starting point, what employers are looking for is a sound knowledge of the domain or sector for which the candidate is being considered for. Therefore whatever field you have specialized in, make sure you have sound clarity on the concepts relevant to your subject. In fact, for some of the roles, employers are even prepared to consider candidates who may not have a formal degree but have an in depth understanding of the subject.
# Myth 2 Employers would provide the necessary training for the skills required to make me productive on the job
In the boom period, when the employers were recruiting in large numbers and had very little lead time, they were prepared to train the candidates after they were recruited to provide them with the relevant skills. However, increasingly, employers are now preferring to recruit candidates who come already equipped with the relevant skill sets and on-the job training period is reduced to a minimum duration mainly focused on company specific orientation.
#/Myth 3 Communication skills are important only for marketing or customer facing roles
Every role today has a fair requirement of communication skills- whether it is a financial accountant, a researcher, an analyst or a trainer, all the roles call for a mix of written and oral communication skills, both in English and sometimes in the local language also. In today's connected world, communication using a variety of media is the key to success. Without good communication skills, it is impossible to progress in careers and get people around you to recognize your value.
#Myth 4 When I apply fo r a job, employer is looking for only the competencies in a specific area directly related to the job.
It is true that the employers look for specialized competencies relevant for the role that you are being considered for. However, today mo re and more employers are looking for candidates who have 'T' shaped competencies. What this really means is that candidates should have broad understanding/exposure to a variety of related areas while specializing in specific set of skills. Therefore, it is not good to ignore all other areas and concentrate in only one area, potential employees are expected to have the ability to appreciate, contribute and if required, move into related areas as situation demands. The employment market today demands ability of individuals to be not specialists but generalists with specialized knowledge and capabilities in one or two areas.
#Myth 5 Once I acquire my degree/post graduate qualification, my education for the life is over.
It is no longer true that you do not have to bother about learning anything new once you finish your formal education. In today's context, with the dynamic situation and the rapidly changing technologies which have a huge impact o n every day life and business, only those who are constantly watching and adapting, manage to survive and grow. Therefore, it is imperative to develop the mindset to learn constantly and consciously develop new competencies to remain ahead in the workplace. Employers look for this ability to learn o n your own without anyone's help and being a self starter while recruiting. In the next few articles, we would take a look at where the jobs in different sectors are and how to get industry ready for these opportunities.