The 2017 South African Matric results are out today.
The annual National Senior Certificate pass rate is hovering around 75%. That’s almost 700 000 i-Gen graduates (born 1995 to present) – either wishing to study further at a tertiary institution, or entering the workplace this year.
There are many Millennials (born 1980 to 1994) that have graduated from universities and colleges, also wanting to get a job and start their careers. Enrollments in universities and colleges are limited, with many students being turned away.
Our national unemployment rate is a staggering 27%, with the expanded unemployment rate being closer to 40%!
Over the past eight or nine years, many graduates have asked me to assist them in finding employment.
Here is some advice to any graduate wishing to enter the business world today.
First, take a good look at your resume and your LinkedIn profile. Get them polished, professional and ensure they reflect your personality. There are professionals that can do this for a charge, but there is no substitute for doing this yourself. It should read as a story about you and your achievements.
Ask: So, what? then add the response to your profile. Make it interesting and easy to read. Limit the use of technical jargon and stick to the facts.
Although you may have no experience yet, that will come with time. In the meantime, showcase who you are and what you can bring to an organisation.
Ask: Why me? Why would someone hire you over someone else with the same qualifications and experience?
When applying for a position, find out as much as you can about the company you are approaching. Make sure to look up the person you are seeing and connect with them before your meeting. Knowing about the company and its people will help you understand their culture to adjust accordingly.
Entering the workplace or going on to tertiary studies, can be a daunting time in your life. Today, there are no shortage of obstacles to trip you up as you are maturing into a young adult. But, if you do your bit and make an effort to stand out and be unique, you will find no shortage of opportunities.
Congratulations to all the recently graduated Matric students!
Well done and good luck for your future endeavours!