Graduates only have eyes for the big guys: survey

Many graduates are ignoring the possibility of finding a job with small and medium enterprises (SMEs) because they believe larger organisations offer them the nest chance of getting a stable job, according to a new report.

The study, carried out by managed services provider Iconnyx, also found that many graduates are shunning use of social media, including business-oriented LinkedIn, when it comes to job hunting.

The company quizzed UK SMEs and recruitment agencies and found that just 25% of graduates "proactively" seek employment with an SME as they believe that larger organisations can offer better job prospects with greater stability.

When it comes to use of social media to help them find a job, just one in 10 graduates said they have a LinkedIn profile and are actively using it to hunt for a job. Slightly more worryingly only one in three graduates have even heard of LinkedIn and been encouraged to use it by their university.

"The issues for both ‘top talent’ graduates and growing SMEs alike are frustrating in that there is no obvious forum for the two to connect and ‘sell’ to each other," said Tim Walker, managing director of Iconnyx.

"Universities need to alert their talent to the opportunities that exist in UK small to medium businesses as well as channels for reaching them. It’s frustrating to see that high-growth companies typically lose out on the best of graduate talent for these reasons. Universities should invite SMEs and networks like LinkedIn into the student community far earlier," he added.

The results of the social media aspect of this survey is in stark contrast to recent findings from recruitment firm Reesmarx europe that claimed around one-third of respondents had used a social network site to secure a new job.

LinkedIn was unsurprisingly top of the job hunting pile, with 27% of respondents saying they’d used that service to get new work. A further 6% said they had used a different social network to hunt down a new career opportunity.

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