Recessions and economic downturns can seem pretty scary, particularly if you are a college student or recent graduate hoping to break into the job market. You haven’t even gotten your foot in the door while experienced workers are being laid off left and right. However, there are a few major advantages that young candidates have in a tight job market.
The first major advantage young workers have is that they cost employers less money. When companies are trying to cut costs, candidates with lower salary expectations are a plus. Older workers already have higher salaries and have gotten accustomed to bonuses and other perks. They also cost their employers more in terms of benefits, such as health insurance.
Another big advantage for young workers is that they are more willing to travel and usually open to moving for a job. And since many don’t yet have spouses or children, they are usually able to work longer hours and take on more responsibilities than their older co-workers.
Finally, young workers are familiar with technology. Certainly many older workers are very tech-savvy, but today’s college graduates have been raised around computers and have probably taken several computer courses while in school. They understand that technology is constantly changing and that computer skills are essential in almost any occupation.
If you are a recent graduate, don’t be discouraged by the headlines. Just be aware it may take longer to find a job and you may need to compromise a little. Gaining experience is the focus for the first couple of years out of school, so be open to moving to where the jobs are more plentiful or working at a less prestigious organization.
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