Experienced candidates require less costly training and onboarding than recent college graduates. They know how to solve problems on the job, because they have done so before. They are confident, capable, and independent. However, they are also limited in number and typically have higher salary requirements than their inexperienced counterparts. Here are seven reasons why taking a risk on a recent graduate could pay off.
1. There are a lot of them.
According to a National Center for Education Statistics projection, more than 1.8 million students will graduate college with a bachelor’s degree by the end of 2016. That is a large applicant pool of new workers looking for employment and eager to prove themselves.
2.They take risks.
Innovation is the only way for a company to stay a true leader in its field and innovation requires new ideas and risk tolerance. “New pros are hungry to innovate and aren’t afraid to take a risk,” says Amit Chauhan, the CEO and cofounder of Recroup. “They are sponges ready to soak up knowledge and are much more apt to go for things that more experienced pros would hesitate with. This can bring a lot of value and reward to companies.” Empower your new hires to take smart risks and maximize the value of having their fresh eyes and fresh ideas on old problems.
3. They ask a lot of questions.
While the lengthy onboarding required for inexperienced hires is a high up-front cost, the many questions they have to ask to understand the company, the industry, and the work, can be influential for more experienced members of your team. “A new person to the organization asks “why” a lot and this makes everyone stop and think, and that is good,” says Denise Lloyd, founder of Engaged HR. “This question is often skipped by those who have been in the workplace for a long time because they make their own assumptions about why instead of asking the question.” Being forced to take the time to answer these questions offers an opportunity to rethink why things are done the way that they are and consider whether there may be more advantageous alternatives.
4. They have lower salary requirements.
You save money on training by hiring an experienced candidate, but an experienced professional will require a higher salary. If your team is composed of mostly experienced professionals and few or no entry level employees, it is very likely that you will have experienced workers working on tasks well below their pay level. Unfortunately for you, you’re paying the same higher salary whether they’re working on technical tasks or basic work that a cheaper, less experienced worker could handle.
5. They are more moldable.
Experienced hires from other companies come with bad habits and preformed notions about the proper way to do work and behave at work. This can give rise to fit problems, that may cause tensions within your team or result in higher churn. Recent grads don’t know your company’s culture, but they don’t know another one either. “Similar to hiring within, employers are able to continue to foster their own culture and develop their employees the way that works well for them,” says Chauhan. “Hiring someone outside the organization can greatly undermine those efforts, but new professionals can easily meld to the culture and quickly build the skills the company needs.”
6. They know tech.
Recent graduates are not only still closer to what they learned in college, a potential benefit for math-heavy data roles, but also more connected to technology and more eager to stay on top of trends. According to a comScore whitepaper, more than four out of every five Millennials owns a smartphone, compared to just two out of three 35- to 54-year-olds. Tech is a huge part of the modern market and younger generations have the upperhand in tech skills.
7. You can create lifelong relationships.
Recent graduates have their entire careers ahead of them and, if you treat them well and challenge them appropriately, might stay with your company for many years. “When your company is the place an employee has been permitted to blossom and shine, they will love working with you, most likely forever,” says David K. Williams, CEO of Fishbowl. “Thus, turnover is low.”
Between lower salary costs, fewer bad habits, a tendency towards innovation, and more, there are many reasons why considering decreasing experience requirements for a job can be beneficial. Some jobs must be done by experienced workers, but don’t fall into the trap of assuming that more experience is always a good thing.
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