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It’s time to break the experience-unemployment cycle for young job seekers. Here’s how.

March 22, 2021

By: Itseorise Tuedor

Employers should reevaluate their job requirements and expand their recruitment funnels to capture more skilled young talent.

It is become more difficult for youth across the country to land a job in their field.  Many young people do not have the opportunity to develop the hard and soft skills that employers require from young candidates. 

And it’s for good reason. Take a look at the job boards across any hiring platform. You’ll see that many reputable organizations require at least two to three years of experience.  

And the cycle begins. Youth are stuck in the cycle of not being able to find jobs because of their lack of experience, and cannot gain this experience because of their inability to land jobs. 

Long-time barrier has been worsened by the pandemic

While this problem has been around for a long time, it has only worsened since the pandemic.  During periods of crisis and economic hardship, youth development is often overlooked.

We’ve seen this across the Canadian workforce. In response to lost business due to COVID-19, early talent opportunities for youth and women were cut.

In addition to the pandemic economy, youth have to navigate obstacles such as harmful stereotypes and lack of networking opportunities. As a result, many youth are placed even further from opportunities to build the relevant skills required to break into their field. 

The effects of limited opportunities can weaken the Canadian economy

The effects of unemployment on youth are long-lasting. If barriers to employment are not considered, it can lead to detrimental outcomes for our country’s future. 

According to MercyCops, young people with a history of unemployment are more likely to face less job development opportunities and fewer opportunities for financial growth. 

Companies should take the time to reassess what they require for entry-level positions and how that affects youth. They can also consider how non-traditional experiences and real-life circumstances add value like resiliency, creativity and communication skills to any team. 

Employers can also actively create opportunities for youth engagement such as paid internships and diversifying their hiring funnels. This will  get at the root of the systemic barriers causing youth unemployment. It is important to remember that an investment in youth is an investment in the future of Canada’s economy. 

Youth: Are you looking to build your skills and experience? Register for the InterviewME talent pool for job opportunities and free interview coaching in your area!

Employers: We are always looking for dedicated organizations that are passionate about investing in youth talent. Contact us today for more info on our national employer coalition.

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