Jobseekers clueless about what employers want

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Jobseekers need to brush up how they come across to people and make sure they can work with others to give themselves the best chance of getting a job.

New research shows employers rate being able to blend in effectively at work as a crucial skill when they recruit new staff.

Just 11 per cent of jobseekers think these skills are important to have when starting work, even though 88 per cent of employers say they are a top priority.

Now the team at training experts learndirect is urging people to make sure they are confident they come across well and their maths and IT skills are also up to scratch.

Head of learning Peter Shugglebotham says in a tough job market being able to stand out from the crowd is essential.

He said: “Employers are looking for people who can fit in and get on with the job from the very start. They want people who can handle customers and give good service. They want people who can get on with colleagues, look presentable and turn up on time.

“So jobseekers should be doing everything they can to make sure they have the skills and knowledge to do all those things. Without them they are going to really struggle to make an impression.”

Other findings from the research include:

> Jobseekers are failing to impress at the interview stage, and 21 per cent of jobseekers don’t know how to create a good impression

> Jobseekers need to brush up on their basic skills: 64 per cent of jobseekers in Luton say poor spelling is the area they have been criticised for the most in previous jobs, whilst 56 per cent of employers rate proficiency in English as a top priority when recruiting

> Jobseekers blame the education system for letting them down with 33 per cent of jobseekers and 37 per cent of employers say schools and colleges need to better prepare students for the job market.

The research was conducted as part of the learndirect Make it Count campaign, which aims to encourage people to learn new skills and get the qualifications they need to improve their job prospects. The findings from the research lend support to recent calls from industry to introduce workplace skills training to the school curriculum.