The challenge organizations faces with respect to hiring fresh college graduates are essentially of two kinds. The first is by virtue of the space these organizations operate in- the business of skilling and training people. The corporate trainers and skill instructors, who comprise an overwhelming majority of the workforce, impart new skills to people thus allowing them to either earn a livelihood or do their jobs better. In either case, they inevitably require prior work experience in their own specialized domain to be able to venture into formal training. And this is where the challenge lies - organizations cannot hire fresh college graduates as trainers or skill instructors simply because they lack the experience and expertise required for those roles. It is, therefore, only for support functions such as HR, Marketing, Finance and MIS who can be hired from these fresh talents. While doing so, organizations face a second challenge, which is the attitude of the candidates themselves. Many of them, when they first join, are overly ambitious while some others are plain confused about what they wish to achieve. Moreover, fresh pass-outs today have a certain perception about the work they want to do or the way they want to do it, which is often enough at odds with organizational reality. There is also a term for this –'expectation mismatch'. Not many of us know that employee attrition is the highest amongst those who are at the entry level and that too within the first year. Many youngsters also want to work in a glamorous environment and take short-cuts to success and have an overall fast-paced career trajectory without realizing that it doesn't really happen. It is advisable to fresh college graduates that they should spend time learning the ropes of their role, asking questions even at the risk of sounding silly. They should also look for seniors within the organization who can mentor them internally. Clichéd as it may sound, they should not be in a hurry to achieve fame or wealth, instead they should concentrate on enhancing their skills and the other two will inevitably follow.
Finding the right candidate with the right attitude is a tough task and even then organizations work hard to ensure that the expectation setting is done right. A mismatch between expectations and reality is not only a let-down for the employee but also for the employer.
Thomas Mathew, a graduate in English Literature and a Post Graduate in Personnel Management & Industrial Relations, heads the Corporate Planning & Strategy Function at Centum Learning Limited, a Bharti Group Company. He is working as the Senior Vice President in Centum since 2006 and has over 25 years of experience in the field of Human Resources Management, business operations and Corporate Planning.