So the year is drawing to a close in an avalanche of tinsel and poorly judged shots of mint Baileys. Most of us will be glad to see the back of 2012 – it was the year blighted by record levels of youth unemployment and, er, Rylan – but jobseekers have a few good reasons to be positive about 2013. The number of NEETs (young people not in education, employment, or training) is in decline and MPs are campaigning for a fair wage for interns (bonus!), so it looks like the tide is finally changing for young people.
But what else does 2013 hold for our careers? We’ve put our heads together and come up with four predictions for the coming year. Now we’re not Mystic Meg, but if we’re not right about most of these we’ll eat our (Christmas) hats.
2013 will be the year that…
1.) Recruitment gets creative. Gone are the days when your CV is the only thing employers think about when hiring new staff – these days they have a whole bevvy of information at the end of their fingertips. Social media is already playing an increasingly important role in the recruitment process, with Twitter activity, LinkedIn profiles and even Facebook now taken into consideration by most companies.
Next year, we predict that you lot will cotton on to the power of social networking and the internet in your job search and get creative with your applications. So whether it’s a Facebook page dedicated to your career, a Twitter campaign to get you a job or just a nifty CV – 2013 is the year to get creative with recruitment. Looking for inspiration? Check out Daan’s AMAZING application for a job at the Guardian.
2.) The jobs market will be flooded by the über-trained. The number of NEETs has decreased at the same time as youth unemployment rose again at the end of the year. You know what that means right? Well do you? Us neither. But we can make an educated guess: we reckon it means that more and more of you lot are going back into training or education to increase your chances of employment – or to simply ride out the storm until the jobs market improves.
Anyone specialising in a specific field will inevitably be very appealing to potential employers so getting re-trained might be a good idea, but it’s by no means the only solution. Getting lots of experience in a very specific field is a good way of specialising without shelling out for more training – and it’s the easiest way for employers to picture you in a specific role. Get on it like a car bonnet for 2013. And on that note…
3.) Internships will be an essential step for all young people in all industries – but they’ll be paid. As it stands, 82% of businesses say that they view skills gained during internships as the single most important consideration when recruiting young people – and we expect that number to grow next year.
But it’s not all bad news. We predict that 2013 will be the year that we finally let unpaid internships die a death. Preferably a long, slow one involving being ironically decapitated by a graduation cap. Or something. MPs across all the parties are already backing an end to unpaid internships, and major corporations (like ours!) have come out to say that all interns should be paid at least the national minimum wage. So you might still be making tea in 2013, but at least you’ll be able to buy a cheeky drink after work to drown your sorrows.
4.) Digital literacy will be the most important thing on your CV. I don’t know if you got the memo, but the internet is, like, kind of a big deal at the moment. I know, who knew right?!
If your digital literacy isn’t already on the top of your CV, make sure it is in 2013. IT literacy is now a pre-requisite for employment, with a massive 92% of new recruits required to be tech-savvy.
That doesn’t mean you have to be a coding genius – although it might help – companies are equally keen to employ young’uns who are social media geniuses to help sort out their corporate Twitter and Facebook accounts. Got 1000 followers on Twitter? Make sure you mention it in your application next year. Who knew all those years of procrastination might actually pay off later down the line?