Moving on…

So, that thing I wanted to write about? Forget about it. It’s being dealt with, and I’ll tell you all about it later. It’s consumed too much of my time and thoughts to bother with any more.

So, I’m trying to get a job. Around this time of year is when the race is really on to nab all the juiciest positions. There are quite a few 50k a year positions on offer, too, by the looks of things. So, I’m confronted on all sides by continual CV revisions, interview preparation, trawling through job sites and filling in application forms. But then again, who isn’t?

This is clearly a big time of year for . The exciting, and rightfully so, Reed adverts envision a world where you love Mondays. On the other hand, Jobsite ads are rather sinister. I’ve not been on the Jobsite website, almost entirely because the advert terrifies me. Also, Reed is an enormous help.

Still, graduate employment is a toughie. I imagine there’s nothing worse than finishing university at a loose end, and yet every year, thousands of students graduate without plan or hope.

It’s a problem that has got worse in recent years (and has nothing to do with politics- the economy is broke and nobody knows how to fix it). Over the course of six years, graduate unemployment has increased by 50%, resulting in 1.5 million graduates looking for jobs last year.

What’s the problem, though? Are there not enough jobs? Are there better candidates? Are there too many graduates?

It’s a combination of the three, in my opinion. But that’s just my opinion. You disagree with me, I’ll disagree with you. Still, here are my reasons.

There aren’t enough jobs. In this country, we’re expensive to employ, and whole factories move overseas as a result. Not only are hundreds of unskilled jobs gone, but so are the managerial roles. As the money runs out, companies make cuts- and positions close forever. Graduate schemes are an unnecessary luxury- why bother investing for tomorrow when there might not be one?

There are better candidates. A lot of employers care more about “life experience” than they do about whether or not you have a certificate. I read about a CEO who made a point of always interviewing candidates with a third, as they probably had an interesting reason behind it. A first may well be useless if you haven’t got the sought-after extra-curriculars, work experience and personality. In many people’s opinions, you’re more likely to get a decent bit of chat out of an apprentice than a posh graduate.

There are too many graduates. Not very leftie of me to say so, but I’ve never been afraid of that. I could at this point run through a list of all the daft courses people are graduating with, but my experiences with the women at Aim Higher (in my experience, no men work under the Aim Higher banner), no course is a “Mickey Mouse degree”. They’re all degrees, and we have to encourage everyone, no matter how stupid, to try and get onto a degree course.

In the words of an Aim Higher Woman: “we want everyone to be going to university”.

In addition to Staffordshire University’s four-year BA in stop-motion animation and puppetry, there should probably be degrees in interior decorating. Although Southampton Solent tackles the tricky topic of yacht and powercraft design, perhaps we should be running similar courses for nail technicians.

We need interior decorators. We need nail technicians. Surely we should allow them to be the best that they can be?

This attitude wastes everyone’s time and money. No, we do not need courses in “Adventure and Media”, University of Cumbria. Let our film-watching windsurfing instructors earn some money instead of wasting three years of their time. As for failed dentists, medics and lawyers- don’t lead them on. A BSc in oral health science does not a dentist make. A three year detour into human biochemistry will not turn a mere mortal into a doctor. Don’t even get me started on “justice”.

We are not all meant to go to university. We don’t all need to. And those of us who shouldn’t have gone shouldn’t expect a job at the end of it.

So, does that include me?

My calling is the written word. Did I need a degree for this? No. I need money and a room of my own. I’m afraid it looks like I need a job.

Most of it’s done online now, by clever companies who arrange aptitude tests, webcam interviews and keyword CV searches. The only problem with this is online forms. If there are standard requirements for the job, it won’t let you proceed with the application unless you’ve ticked the box, forcing you to lie.

Am I available for interview on the 24th December? Why, of course. Do I have an HGV license? Who doesn’t! Am I willing to give up chocolate? Well, I do really want a job, so yes.

It’s all very well being told not to lie in a job application, but when you’re told you have to in order to get the job, it’s a different matter.

Computers are stupid. You can’t argue with them, charm them like you would a real person. They level the playing field- which really isn’t fair for those of us who were playing downhill before.

Still, I have an interview. Which I can’t complain about. Good luck everyone- you’re going to need it with a card like me in the market.


One response »

  1. Yes, now I’m sure I’m just haplessly stealing a film plot but I think people got to Uni to procrastinate (except for really smart people with weird shaped faces – I’m not sure why they got to uni) I know I did. But wouldn’t this be cool, shovel them fees into a fund, take it to a space, hook un with an ‘enabler’ and play, find out what makes you tick, what you do well, find your calling and use that nice little fund we talked about earlier. wouldn’t that be cool, wouldn’t it though, you should totally do that, you could call it ‘The university of whatever the fuck you want it to be’
    build it and they will come….

    much love

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