Businesses Unite to Tackle Youth Unemployment
15 February 2016 at 11:16 am
Some of Australia’s leading companies have signed on to a new competition that aims to showcase the skills and talents of young Australians and show employers why they need to look beyond the resume of the future workforce.
HR and recruitment specialists Randstad announced the launch of it Shaping Young Futures Video competition on Monday morning, with Virgin Australia, NAB, SEEK, L’Oréal Australia, Marketo, LinkedIn and the Foundation for Young Australians.
The competition will allow young Australians to demonstrate their talents through the submission of a short video on Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Google+ or Facebook using hashtag #ShapingYoungFutures, or via the Randstad Shaping Young Futures website.
The best entry, as voted for by a panel of judges, will receive a round-the-world trip, which includes international business meetings with youth ambassadors and senior business leaders, a day with the F1 Williams Martini Racing Team at their Headquarters in Oxfordshire, England, a mentoring session with a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, as well as spending money, career advice and training in key skills.
Randstad’s Director of Social and Public Affairs, Steve Shepherd, said the competition was created as a way to tackle Australia’s youth unemployment problem.
The latest figures claim that there are over 250,000 young people out of work and the unemployment rate amongst young people (12.1 per cent) is more than double the national unemployment rate (5.8 per cent).
Shepherd said the challenge for young people was securing full-time positions.
“Since June 2008, the number of young people in full-time work has been in decline and hit an all-time low in September 2015,” Shepherd said.
“The problem is, they cannot get a job because they don’t have the experience. But they can’t get the experience because they can’t get a job.”
Many young workers have since turned to part-time work, with the number of young people in part-time work surpassing those in full-time work in February 2013.
In 2015, the number of young part-time workers was at its highest, as young job seekers looked for any job to secure a means of living.
Shepherd said despite their valuable skills and experience, young jobseekers’ lack of experience often meant their talents went undiscovered by employers looking to fill full-time positions.
“Ironically, young people’s chances of employment are already limited by the very format of the traditional CV and recruitment processes, which have been designed to screen them out in the first place,” he said.
“How can they demonstrate, on a resume, skills like creativity, innovation problem solving skills and collaboration, when they have little or no previous work experience? Our research shows these are the very skills businesses are demanding. The same skills the youth of Australia have been developing since they first entered the education system.”
The Shaping Young Futures Video Competition has been designed to showcase the hidden skills of our future workforce and demonstrate what Australian businesses are missing out when they fail to consider young job seekers.
“Australian businesses are missing out on some of Australia’s best talent by screening young jobseekers. In the next 10 years, Australia could see almost 20 per cent of its workforce retire,” Shepherd said.
“If we don’t provide the work experience to our future workforce and get them on the career ladder, we’re going to have a serious skills problem in the near future. Businesses will be fighting tooth and nail to attract and retain the best young talent to fill the gaps left by our experienced workers.
“With more and more entry level jobs disappearing in the Australian economy, as well as the fact our workforce is set to shrink considerably in the next few years, it is imperative we, the business community of Australia, take a stand to support the development of our future workforce.”
The top five finalists, including a People’s Choice winner, will receive a one month paid internship with one of Australia’s most attractive employers – either L’Oréal Australia, Marketo, NAB, SEEK or Virgin Australia.
Shepherd said all entrants would have exclusive access to Randstad’s online portal of job seeking resources and career advice with the aim of developing their job seeking skills.
“We think this is a great way to showcase the unique talent of Australian youth to employers. At a time when businesses are openly talking about the need to recruit skills of the future, like innovation and creativity, what better way to demonstrate these skills than a video showing just how innovative and creative the young talent in Australia are,” Shepherd said.
Supporting the competition is Australian beatboxer Tom Thum and comic trio and YouTube stars SketchShe, who have submitted their own videos showing how they have used their talents to build successful careers.