Business

Majority of graduates over-qualfied for their jobs

Many graduates are in jobs they are over qualified for such as in supermarkets

THE number of graduates in jobs for which they are over-qualified is at "saturation point".

Research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) the majority of graduates, 58.8 per cent, are in jobs that don't require a degree.

It is a figure that Lisa McIlvenna from Business in the Community (BITC) in the north said was "striking".

"For some of the graduates who make up this figure, they may be perfectly happy with their current situation, however, the implications reach far and wide," she said.

“If graduates are frequently taking lower-skill-level jobs, there is a risk that employer expectations will shift towards anticipating degree-level candidates for roles where a degree is unnecessary, thus further skewing the labour market. Underemployed graduates are also potentially pushing job challenges further down the chain, creating employment issues for those with fewer qualifications.

“Most worrying, however, is the fact that many graduates who are underemployed are disillusioned. We see this on a daily basis as we engage with graduates looking for work. Unfortunately, many of these talented young people feel moving to another country is the only choice for them achieve their potential or, worse still, many do not realise their potential at all.

She said the charity had created a Responsible Business Internship Programme to try and tackle some of the issues graduates face.

BITC works in partnership with Belfast Harbour on the scheme which encourages employers to provide meaningful, responsible internship opportunities.

“Businesses have the responsibility to make a difference,” she said.

“After all, it’s our future that’s at stake too. Having a long-term, sustainable view of employment supports a positive future for your business, the economy, this generation of young people and those coming behind. Who will lead your business in the next 10, 20, 50 years? It is incumbent on all business leaders to tackle this issue now. Five years down the line will be too late.”

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