Milkround host first employability training day

Students and graduates benefit from hands-on career guidance.

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Milkround continued to lead the way in graduate recruitment yesterday, hosting their first employability training day to boost career confidence among students and graduates. The market-leading website invited 20 students and recent graduates to their London head office for a day dedicated to providing guidance and support where it is needed most.

Working with a qualified trainer, Milkround created a structure designed to improve the skills and confidence of these young people. With one to one CV clinics, mock assessment centres, interview and covering letter advice, the interactive day was deemed a huge success and something that Milkround will continue to do.

One attendee commented: “The training was extremely useful for me, covering all aspects of the recruitment process in detail. I have identified my strengths and weaknesses so I can improve my competencies ready for my future career”.

Candidate Marketing Manager, Laura Smith commented: “The training day has really supported our vision of helping students and graduates build their confidence. It was a real pleasure to work alongside such talented individuals and see first-hand the commitment and drive these young people have when exploring their career options.”

Milkround and Adzuna join forces to launch Graduate of the Year Competition 2013

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Milkround are extremely excited to announce an exclusive partnership with Adzuna.co.uk to launch the Graduate of the Year Competition 2013.

Competition for graduate positions continues to rise in the UK with over 50 applicants for every available graduate job. Unemployment among 18-25 year olds is the highest it’s been for decades and graduates are finding it tougher than ever to land an entry-level position. But there are glimmers of hope in the market, with top employment companies Milkround and Adzuna teaming up to launch a nationwide campaign to find Britain’s “Graduate of the Year 2013”.

Recent data from job site Adzuna.co.uk shows that there are currently 18,460 graduate jobs currently available in the UK, but more graduates than ever are fighting it out for these positions. There are over 100 applicants per graduate job in competitive sectors such as Finance, Healthcare and Law.  Finance graduates have to fight it out with 118 applicants for every role.

The Adzuna and Milkround competition, open to all recent and soon-to-be graduates, will reward the brightest and best graduates in their field – from academics and student politicians to sports people and young entrepreneurs. Applicants must answer a series of simple questions about themselves and what makes them special, and the winner will be rewarded with the following prize:

  • An internship with a top UK company (including eBay, L’Oreal, Sony & Google)
  • A cash prize of £1000
  • A CV clinic with a top UK entrepreneur
  • The Illustrious Crown of “Graduate of the year”

Applications for Graduate of the Year are open from today and will stay open until midnight on the 1st July 2013. Students and recent university graduates can apply directly at http://www.adzuna.co.uk/jobs/graduate-of-the-year.html and the overall winner will be announced at the Award Ceremony on the 1st August 2013.

Milkround launch new site, bringing quality to the fore of graduate recruitment

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Milkround is excited to announce the launch of its new website and mobile enabled site today, designed to act as a career resource for students and graduates, whilst driving the best applications for clients from job seekers committed to their graduate career.

Looking beyond the realms of the traditional job board, the new Milkround website puts engagement and quality at the heart of graduate recruitment.

For the last five years Milkround has been rated the most widely-used graduate recruitment website by university finalists* and now it has evolved into a social-media-friendly career resource.

Milkround invested in independent research with a leading market research agency who spoke to students and graduates to understand what they wanted from graduate recruitment websites. This project identified key pillars, which are the foundations of this market leading, candidate led site.

The new Milkround aims to drive engagement amongst users, creating a real job community on-site. This supports their vision of providing students and graduates with career confidence.

Milkround continues to lead the way in graduate recruitment with their new site offering an intuitive, site wide search, providing simple information presented in an easy-to-digest format, ensuring candidates have access to relevant information to shape their careers and make informed decisions about their futures.

Taking a multi-platform approach, Milkround are delighted to launch their mobile-enabled site. With their mobile traffic increasing 225% this year, the new site makes it easier for job seekers to view opportunities and read careers advice on-the-move.

To continue with this innovative theme, Milkround have introduced Milkround+, an area on site to support their one million registered users. It offers a personalised experience, including a user dashboard with recommended opportunities, recently viewed jobs, upcoming events, links to saved searches and a wishlist featuring opportunities flagged for application. 

Milkround is excited to announce their users are now viewing an average of five pages per visit, spending over eight minutes on site. Milkround aim to capitalise on these increases with their new site through building a career community, promoting peer to peer communication and enabling students and graduates to build a network of support during their job hunt.

General Manager Jenni Joplin commented: “This is an exciting time for Milkround. Our new site is the accumulation of two years of hard work and investment, cementing our vision of creating career confidence for students and graduates. With a focus firmly on the candidate experience we can now offer a multi-platform and personalised career resource for our members, which in turn provides our clients with better informed and engaged candidates.Watch out for new features and tools appearing over the coming months!”

Visit http://www.milkround.com today to see these new features or contact one of our team on: 020 3003 4000 or at sales@milkround.com

* The UK Graduate Careers Survey by High Fliers 2008 – 2012 

The High Fliers Research predict a promising year for graduate recruitment

High Fliers Research recently published their annual insights into the Graduate recruitment Market in 2013. Their findings are based on the research of the vacancies and starting salaries at 100 of the UK’s best known and most successful employers.

Prospects for 2013 are predicted to be bright with graduate vacancies expected to rise by 2.7% year on year. The report suggests that the largest growth is expected within the public and retail sectors and with engineering and industrial companies.

Despite an optimistic forecast for the 2011/2012 recruitment season – entry-level vacancies fell by 0.8% compared with the previous year. The biggest cuts were seen at accounting and professional service firms and also investment banks which were down by 1,200 places.

Three-quarters of the graduate vacancies advertised this year by City investment banks and half the training contracts offered by the leading law firms are likely to be filled by graduates who have already completed work experience with the employer which gives added emphasis on students and graduates to partake in internships.

It’s perhaps no surprise to hear that over four-fifths of the UK’s leading graduate employers have confirmed they are offering paid work experience programmes for students and recent graduates this year – a record 11,387 places are available.

Taking graduates on as paid interns represents a risk free approach to finding suitable candidates to hire as permanent employees. This is something we have noticed here at Milkround. With more graduates willing to accept these positions as the need for industry experience far outweighs the need for substantial wages in such a competitive market.
With the High Fliers Research report predicting an increase in graduate opportunities there will no doubt be added competition in the market from the leading recruiters for the top student and graduate talent. Recruiters will have to move fast to ensure they don’t miss out on the UK’s brightest prospects.

Site traffic increases to The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers table on Milkround

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More visitors to Milkround are checking who has made The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers annual listing year-on-year.

The 2012-13 listing has attracted nearly 95,000 visits since its publication on site in September, compared with 75,000 viewing the 2011-12 listing in the equivalent period last year – an increase of 27 percent.

Some 5.1 percent of all visits to Milkround are to view Times Top 100 pages for the 2012-13 listing, compared to 4.2 percent when the 2011-12 listing was published.

Total pageviews have also increased. The 2012-13 listing has attracted 2.8 percent of all pageviews since publication in September. The 2011-12 listing attracted 2.3 percent of pageviews over the same period the previous year.

Being listed in The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers is hugely attractive for candidates, but you can also add your branding to the table page even if you aren’t listed. Speak to your account manager for more information.

You can view The Times Top 100 Graduate Employers 2012-13 on Milkround here:

http://www.milkround.com/times-top-100-graduate-employers/

Technology focus for final edition of Graduate Career in 2012

The fourth and final edition of Graduate Career for 2012 is free with The Times today (Thursday, November 15th) with a focus on technology.

Produced in association with graduate recruitment website Milkround, the November issue also includes a spotlight on graduate career opportunities in East Anglia along with the usual blend of informative features about student living and the graduate jobs market.

Read about careers in renewable and nuclear energy plus how the European Space Agency’s annual graduate programme needs engineering, physics, biology, medicine and business graduates together with lawyers.

There is also an interview with Professor Stephen Hoskins of the University of the West of England Bristol outlining why teaching design is important for British business, and how recent graduates looking to set up a technology business can get into the industry with funding.

Find out why last year more than one in five first year undergrads dropped out of university and the number is expected to rise further for 2012, which councils are actively working with graduates to help them find work and how to clean up your social media web trail so it doesn’t stop you getting hired by savvy recruiters.

Graduate Career is free with The Times today (Thursday, November 15th) and available online at www.graduatecareer.com.

Milkround ups on-campus promotion with launch of Brand Ambassadors

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Students will be seen on campus putting their marketing skills into practice as Milkround launches its Brand Ambassadors scheme.

Seven students have been recruited by the UK’s number one graduate recruitment website to promote the brand on their campus and register their friends and colleagues for its personalised services.

The role gives students the chance to flex their marketing muscle by joining the promotions team at fairs and campus events, identifying sponsorship opportunities, engaging with their peers through lecture shout outs and career talks and using their contacts to boost brand awareness.

Ambassadors will be encouraged to use their initiative and knowledge of their university campus to arrange additional promotional activities with the full support of the Milkround marketing team.

Activities can even extend off-campus as long as they remain focused on the overall objective of sign up.

Milkround Brand Ambassador Marwa Achour said: “I am looking forward to meeting students and sharing my knowledge about the amazing opportunities available through Milkround! Many students struggle at finding internships or knowing what careers are available for them, and this is where Milkround comes in.”

Fellow Brand Ambassador Noori Muhammed added they wanted “to meet new people and provide them with the information to increase their opportunity of securing an internship, placement or graduate job.”

Milkround Candidate Marketing Executive Laura Smith has overseen the launch of the Milkround Brand Ambassadors. She said: “This is an opportunity for ambitious students who want to gain experience in marketing, event promotion and PR to put their skills into practice. We will provide our Ambassadors with full training and the support and guidance they need to trial their own ideas as well as delivering the core aim of improving our brand on campus and registering users to the site”.

“We want passionate and motivated individuals who are confident communicating with new people and self-motivated towards achieving registration targets, and we expect them to have plenty of suggestions for making the role their own so it really beefs up their CVs.”

Milkround’s Brand Ambassadors will expand in the New Year offering more opportunities for students to promote the most widely-used graduate recruitment website.

Are our graduate expectations too high? #trugrad #trulondon

This blog covers my experience at #trulondon as well as the key results from new research by Milkround and aia regarding Gen Y and their social media habits.

Yesterday I attended #trulondon and once again I was swept up with the discussion going on around me ranging from #trugrads right through to Pinterest.  As usual there was lively debate both in person and on the hashtag #trulondon.  Taking my background the track I was most interested in was #trugrads.  I attended this track last February so was interested to see if anything had changed in the past year.

Unfortunately it seemed not much.  There is still a large gap between what employers expect and what graduates are actually doing.  Most of the students who were there were expecting a lot of help in finding a graduate job.  Many were scared off by the recent stats showing the vast amount of applications per job. However there are still roles which graduate recruiters are finding hard to fill because graduates either lack the necessary skills or don’t know how to promote their skills. Many of the students were expecting help with this, in particular through their careers service.  Recruiters in the room though questioned ‘are we entering a culture where students are expecting to be spoon fed too much?’

Some tips I’d give graduates:

  • Gain experience – whether this be voluntary or paid.  If you’re interested in marketing then market yourself – start a blog, tweet, why not start a board on Pinterest
  • Start networking – both offline and online.  The power  really is in your network – start discussions online with influencers, hiring managers and get yourself noticed in the social space.  Also start attending offline events, in particular industry specific.
  • Research – google how to write a CV, typical interview questions etc.  Why not ask people in your network if they can look at your CV or run through a typical interview.
  • Don’t give up – knock backs are a part of life, each one will help you build on your experience and find a role that really suits you.

I was supposed to give a track myself yesterday on Gen Y’s habits on social media but unfortunately during the madness of the unconference I didn’t have time.  The topic was the recent research we’ve conducted at Milkround alongside aia.  I was going to spend time sharing these stats and debating what they could mean for social recruiting in the graduate space.  A lot of cool ideas come out of #trulondon but are ‘Gen Y’, the digital natives, actually keeping up with all the latest technology we’re throwing at them?

We conducted 2 studies – one last year and a further one that drilled down a bit further last month. Here are just some of the key stats:

Social Media Survey – conducted by aia & Milkround

1350 respondents said:

  • 16 % use Google + daily, while 11 % use it most days. 46 % never use it.
  • 45 % have a LinkedIn profile
  • 70 % are aware that graduate recruiters use social media to promote their jobs – but over 51 % would like more assistance in how to use social media when job hunting.
  • Half of all respondents would use a mobile device to register for more details about a job, but less than a quarter would apply for a job via a mobile device.

Social Recruiting Survey – conducted by Milkround

506 respondents said:

  • 43 % have a LinkedIn profile
  • Found that the use of social media depends on which stage they are at:
    • Job Hunting Stage: 64 %
    • Research Stage: 65 %
    • Application Stage: 20 %
    • Interview Stage: 16 %
  • Facebook: 65% would add where they work on their FB profile.
  • Only 17 % of the 57 % that had a twitter account use hashtags.

It’s interesting to see that graduates are becoming more socially savvy whilst looking for a job but it seems like they’re not quite there – many need guidance on how to use these channels.  It will be interesting to see if the gap between students and recruiters narrows in the near future. Here at Milkround we try and bridge this gap by educating students and grads through doings presentations at universities about social media.

If you’d like to receive the Executive Summary for these two studies please get in touch Rhiannon.hughes@milkround.com

Technology and HR combined

The number of graduates applying for each graduate job reached the largest ever in 2011. The biannual survey carried out by the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) revealed on average each graduate vacancy receives 83 applications – compared to just 31 in 2008.  The most recent report by High Fliers Research found that a fifth of employers said application levels had soared by at least 25%. As unemployment continues to increase, with the number of 16-24 years olds out of work now over a million, it’s becoming even more important to be able to manage the huge increase in applications.

This is when an applicant tracking system (ATS) comes into its element.

ATS explained

An ATS, also called a candidate management system, is a software application designed to help companies recruit employees more efficiently.  It allows you to automate and track your recruitment process in a variety of ways, including central storage of CVs, pre-screening candidates with filter questions, arranging interviews and referencing, and emailing groups of candidates using bespoke templates.

An ATS can improve not only the graduate recruiters experience but also the candidate’s as the software allows you to keep candidates informed every step of the way.

ATS – the benefits

One of the key benefits seen by recruiters is the option to store all of the applications in a private, online database, which can be synchronised with your existing HR software. This allows you to record each candidate’s journey from attraction to hire. During this process the automated screening options allows you to reduce the number of candidates that are not suitable for the role.

This means you can focus your time on candidates that do meet your set requirements.

Setting up interview times can always be time consuming but with an ATS it allows you to schedule slots with candidates, based on your calendar. Good ATS providers should also send reminders to those candidates that do not request an interview time, either chasing them or eliminating them from the process. Finally after you decide to hire them an ATS should have the option to request references offered by the candidate. These are once again automated.

Why use an ATS?

  • Pre-screen applications
  • Track candidates from attraction to hire.
  • A cost and time effective way to recruit.
  • A private, online database to store all applications.
  • Functionality to manage and report on your applications.
  • Ability to view, categorise, send correspondence to either a group of applicants or an  individual.
  • Increase efficiency by creating and booking interview slots online.

ATS – who should use it?

An ATS can be used by any graduate recruiter but if any of these points are relevant to you, you should definitely consider using one:

  • Receiving over 100 applications for each role.
  • Lack resources to reply to each candidate that applies.
  • Lack consistency with employer branding.
  • Hard-to-track candidates journey when there is more than one recruiter working on the role.
  • Poor response rate on references.

You can find out more about the Milkround Applicant Tracking System here.