Graphic of graduates

What are the 10 Competencies Critical To Graduate Success?

Hiring graduates isn’t an easy task – for the most part they’ll have no work experience to draw from, making it very difficult to get a clear picture of how well they’ll work in your company. Of course you can always look at their grades, but the data shows that this only predicts about 1% of workplace performance. So what about how many years of education they have in the field? Again, this also only predicts 1% of variation in job performance.

Top recruiters such as Google get around this tricky problem by going straight to the source – by finding out what graduates know –rather than what they say they do. By evaluating a candidate’s cognitive ability and personality it is possible to get an extremely accurate view of how well candidates can perform. Using these methods – it’s possible to predict up to 40% of a candidates workplace performance, making it by far the most accurate method of determining candidate potential.

By speaking to industry leaders, we have identified the 10 competencies which are absolutely critical to graduate success:

Verbal Reasoning: In any workplace communication is keyVerbal reasoning means that your grads can understand and interpret written and verbal information. And even more importantly – they can make themselves understood by others.

Numerical Reasoning: No matter what the job – the basic ability to understand and work with numbers will help grads get by.

Logical Reasoning: Today’s business world is complicated – and problems don’t always have a clear solution. Graduates who have high logical reasoning ability are far more likely to be able to come up with novel solutions to tricky problems.

Drive for results: All the brainpower in the world is useless if it you’re too lazy to apply it. A graduate with a high drive for results won’t quit once they run into an obstacle. Instead, they’ll work hard to come up with a solution.

Social Drive: Despite what some managers want to believe – the workplace is a social endeavour as much as anything else. Graduates who don’t have the social ability to get their co-workers on-side are likely to have a hard time getting help when they need it.

Influencing & Motivating: Your grads are your future managers, and they’re going to need to be able to motivate others to get the job done. A graduate who has the ability to influence and motivate others is not only likely to excel at their own work, but also to help others achieve their full potential as well.

Confidence & Optimism: Everyone suffers a setback in the workplace eventually. But as the famous saying goes ‘It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.’ Graduates high on Confidence & Optimism have the ability to dust themselves off and carry on, even after they make a mistake.

Teamwork: No great endeavour is achieved alone. A graduate who has the ability to work well in a team – whether they’re leading it or not – is going to achieve far more than a lone wolf would. Synergy is more than just a buzzword – it can make a real difference when graduates can pull together on a project.

Dependability: The ability to meet deadlines is make or break in the business world – especially when you’re competing with other businesses on time to market. A dependable grad isn’t going to miss deadlines, and delay others in the process.

Business Acumen: The idea that only managers need to understand how business works is firmly rooted in the industrial revolution – but it is no longer a practical belief. Today, every single team member needs to have a good grasp of the business they’re in. This lets them keep the big picture in mind – even as they’re performing day to day tasks.


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