At the AGCAS conference in September, there was one overriding theme: change. Change within universities and with their employability agendas, change in how career services are delivering support to students, change in governmental higher education policy and changes in the UK and international job market.
One of the hottest topics relating to change was the “fourth industrial revolution,” the theme of the World Economic Forum annual meeting in 2016. While there has always been ongoing change in the labour market, the speed of change is noticeably increasing, with growth in computing power, connectivity, artificial intelligence (AI), biotechnology and other innovative technologies (sometimes referred to as GRAIN technologies – Genetics, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence and Nanotechnologies). As an example of this, in 2015-2020, it is predicted that 5.1 million jobs will be lost to disruptive labour market changes, with a total loss of 7.1 million jobs mainly concentrated in routine white collar office functions, and a gain of 2 million jobs in computing, mathematical, architecture and engineering related fields.
So how do you prepare students for this new reality? At Symplicity, we believe that engaging students early, even before they start their courses, and asking about career aspirations and career readiness kickstarts the career exploration process. Early engagement provides the space to inspire students through employer presentations, internships, or networking with their peers and university alumni about new emerging career opportunities that they might not have yet envisaged. Supporting these activities with taught career development courses or workshops, whether face-to-face or online, also provides the career management tools for students to respond to the shifting job market and prepare them for careers which may involve up to 40 job changes.
Through the power of Symplicity, all employability touchpoints that students can engage in within higher education can be captured and tracked, providing a clear picture of the student journey through their higher education decisions, enabling management teams to make data-driven decisions around their institution-wide employability strategy to deliver positive graduate outcomes.
Schedule a conversation with us to learn more.