Matriculants need to do their homework when navigating the job market and tertiary institutions

Matriculants need to do their homework when navigating the job market and tertiary institutions. Picture: David Ritchie

Matriculants need to do their homework when navigating the job market and tertiary institutions. Picture: David Ritchie

Published Jan 23, 2024


Jennifer Barkhuizen, Head of Marketing at Managed Integrity Evaluation, a background screening services provider, offered insights to 2023 matriculants entering the job market and tertiary institutions.

According to the 2022 Background Screening Index (BSI) report released by Managed Integrity Evaluation (MIE), candidates tend to embellish their qualifications and experience, as employment becomes more and more difficult to find.

Barkhuizen said such findings highlighted the importance of vetting and screening all employees, regardless of status, because proper background checks help with safety, reputation preservation, legal compliance, and maintaining a secure work environment.

A PwC analysis revealed that if a job creation fails, unemployment might reach 40% by the end of the decade.

Economic stagnation, policy stalemate, and load shedding have added to a bleak prognosis, with GDP growth hovering around 1.5%.

This economic climate has a direct impact on the job market, making it critical for job searchers, particularly the matriculation class of 2023, to deliberately select vocations associated with areas experiencing growth.

According to reports, the critical skills list (CSL) that South Africa just released can be a helpful tool for matriculated individuals or their parents who are arranging their career choices, to close the skills gap in the nation.

The CSL, which lists 101 vocations, specifies the knowledge and credentials that are considered necessary in South Africa for work visa applications as well as permanent residency permits.

Due to the growing significance of the digital economy, skills related to software development, sales, business management, IT, banking, and finance are in high demand. Speaking and writing are becoming more and more important in a variety of areas.

Barkhuizen said:“Job seekers are advised to prioritize practical training and skills development as industries increasingly seek candidates with hands-on experience. Entrepreneurship emerges as a viable path, providing autonomy and the potential to contribute to economic growth. However, aspiring entrepreneurs should equip themselves with innovative ideas, practical skills, and a solid understanding of their target market.

“Through establishing their businesses, young individuals and recent matriculants can attain a heightened level of control over elements such as their work hours, working conditions, and the realization of their financial objectives. The potential for contributing to solutions to South Africa’s staggering youth unemployment rate also highlights the importance and urgency of pursuing entrepreneurship.

“Talking about the big issue of youth unemployment in South Africa, entrepreneurship is in the spotlight. It’s time for both the public and private sectors to think ahead about what youth entrepreneurship looks like. That means considering the skills today’s and tomorrow’s entrepreneurs need to not just get by but to make it in the ever-changing world we’re living in.”

The Star

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