MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR GAP!
TMP Survey Suggests Graduates Aren’t Capitalising on Gap Year Experience
The post-graduation gap year is looking like a promising option for graduates keen to escape the economic turmoil in Britain, with as many as 42 per cent of this year’s crop likely to take a gap year. However, a recent survey has indicated that gap year graduates are not making the best use of their experiences when it comes to the crunch in interviews. Up to 20 per cent of ‘gappies’ felt that employers weren’t interested in their gap travel experiences, 6 per cent struggled to communicate the skills and benefits of their experience in interviews, and 13 per cent said they didn’t even mention their gap year in interviews.
This evidence suggests that, while taking a year out may be a great way to reduce the impact of the recession, undergrads need to be more focused on the CV building reasons for taking time out. Most importantly, graduates need to ‘ensure they can demonstrate the skills they have learnt to potential employers when they return,’ says Jayne Cullen, Head of Graduate Solutions at TMP Worldwide, the organization that conducted the survey.
The rising use of competency-based interview questions such as ‘tell me about a time when you had to work as a team’, means that gap year experiences, relating to competencies a company is looking for, are essential for graduates who want to be interview savvy.
By Ed Thompson
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