Getting a Job: What do Employers Think of the VET System
In today’s job market young people have to do everything possible to get a head start on their career, and it’s important to consider whether the vocational education and training system or higher education is going to benefit you more.
Here’s what employers are thinking about graduates.
Table of Contents
- 1 Not all further education is created the same
- 2 Work experience is more important than qualifications
- 3 Courses that focus on meeting the needs of employers are preferred
- 4 Generally, employers feel that VET graduates have the skills required for their career
- 5 Of employers are having difficulties recruiting employees
Not all further education is created the same
In Australia, education is one of our biggest exports. Unfortunately, that encourages less than legitimate opportunities to try and take advantage of students by offering substandard programs.
Employers want to know that the training system is reliable and that graduates with vocational qualifications are going to be prepared for the workplace.
Throughout Melbourne and beyond, there are different schools that offer different options for school students, graduates and everyone in between.
When considering studying in the VET system, make sure you think about all of your options and check that they’re registered training organisations, or RTO’s.
Both private providers and TAFE schools can provide high quality vet qualifications and training packages, but make sure they’ve got a good reputation or go through a website that will only recommend genuine quality training options.
For more on TAFE vs. private training organisations, read this article.
Work experience is more important than qualifications
Employers are looking for workers who already have experience in the workplace. This doesn’t mean in the exact industry or area that their business is in, it just means that they’re looking for people who have had the chance to grow and develop specific skills that can only be taught through employment.
Simple things, like turning up to work on time and being happy to learn new things are proven by work experience. But that doesn’t mean that young australians shouldn’t have a qualification at all.
“While a university degree does result in improved job and salary prospects, especially for post-graduates, there is also a huge number of graduates not using the skills they acquired at university when they get a job.”
– The Graduate Outcomes Survey 2018
Instead, employers are often going to prefer VET students over university graduates because they’ve completed work experience as a part of their VET courses.
Employers value VET graduates precisely because of the more practical part of their recognised training that makes them ready to start work as soon as they leave study.
Courses that focus on meeting the needs of employers are preferred
With so many courses out there, it can be difficult to figure out which high quality, industry recognised training program you should go with. One of the best ways to figure out which programs meet the needs of employers is to have a look at their industry associations.
Those that teach the needed industry skills will have work partnerships and industry connections or links to relevant Australian employers.
Also consider if they have connections with the relevant government body. If you’re looking at a teaching course, being supported by the department of education suggests that the courses offered, whether full-time or part-time, are valued by Australian employers.
Generally, employers feel that VET graduates have the skills required for their career
Which means that generally the VET sector is successfully teaching industry skills and fulfilling training needs.
It also means that if you do a VET course, you’re likely to find a job that you’re prepared for, whether that’s in Western Australia, Victoria, or one of the territories.
Of employers are having difficulties recruiting employees
Despite the education sector working to make Australia’s workforce development more suited to industry needs, there’s clearly room for improvement.
One of the main reasons that employers found it difficult to recruit employees was potential employees in the labour market having skill shortages. This is an area that the VET sector is actively working to improve.
With pre apprenticeships and apprenticeships gaining popularity in recent years, employers and the federal government are recognising the important role of well trained 18 to 25 year olds entering the workforce already equipped with the skills and the industry needs.
For more on pre apprenticeships, read this article.
Things are looking up for VET graduates. The Australian government in recent years has recognised the importance of reliable training providers and has tried to ensure quality outcomes and skills needs.
By introducing bodies like the Australian skills quality authority, this ensures that training providers are not only creating quality outcomes, but also meeting the needs of employers.
All of this means that VET students are generally well regarded by employers as being prepared for the workforce. With there being a shortage of workers, this also suggests that job prospects are incredibly good for VET graduates.
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