Newer grads preferred in entry-level hiring

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Newer grads preferred in entry-level hiring

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Local conglomerates consider how long an entry-level applicant has been out of school as the most important factor in hiring, according to a study released Tuesday.

Companies that were surveyed said the applicant’s graduation date mattered most, and the chance of those who have been out of schools for more than three years to advance beyond the first part of the application process was lower than 10 percent, according to research by the Korea Research Institute for Vocational Education & Training (Krivet).

A survey of 100 recruiters from the top 500 companies in Korea showed that recruiters put some 20 percent weight on applicants’ graduation date, followed by their GPA (16.2), academic major (14.7) and name recognition of the school (14.5).

“Many companies preferred those who are degree candidates or those graduated within a year when they submit applications,” the state-run think tank said in its report. “Those who graduated from college but haven’t found jobs for more than three years had only a 7.8 percent chance of passing the first part of the recruiting processes that review resumes and applications even though they had good GPAs.”

The study found that many companies prefer applicants who graduated from the top 10 universities in Korea, followed by colleges in Seoul and state-run universities outside of Seoul. Koreans who graduated from private colleges outside of Seoul had the least chance of receiving job offers.

The data showed that only 10.7 percent of people who graduated from private colleges in non-Seoul regions but had over a 4.0 GPA on a 4.5 point scale passed the first round of the application process.

“As the graduation date becomes more important factor in finding jobs, there are negative effects coming from it such as more numbers of young Koreans postpone their graduations,” said the report. “There needs to be some policy changes so that companies can’t discriminate people for their graduation dates.”

Language proficiency levels or what kinds of license or certificates that applicants have weren’t as important as many young Koreans believe, the report showed.

During the interview process, recruiters said they consider the morality and personality of the applicants as the most important factors.

Teamwork and problem-solving skills were some of the other major criteria they seek.

“Korean companies believe good morality and personality is a must for job-seekers and many have said people can learn how to work after they are hired but that their personalities never can be changed,” said the Krivet report.

Meanwhile, Krivet surveyed 100 recruiters from 500 major companies. The 500 companies hire about 100,000 college graduates a year.


BY KIM YOUNG-NAM [kim.youngnam@joongang.co.kr]

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