Optimism is high for on-campus recruitment service AUT talenthub after a record placement of interns and graduate candidates last month, despite the impact of COVID-19 on the New Zealand economy.
"Despite COVID-19, we are now seeing the same amount of roles coming through as we did the this time last year – and our job to placement ratio is higher," says AUT talenthub Relationship Manager Rachel Shareef.
"Many businesses have started rallying and looking for fresh talent and we're well placed at AUT talenthub to find the ideal student or graduate.
AUT Mechanical Engineering graduate Calvin Pereira was struggling to find work after completing his postgraduate diploma in engineering – until he saw an ideal job advertised through AUT talenthub with beverage manufacturer Brix & Co. He met with AUT talenthub Candidate Manager Jade Bradley to discuss the role and was put forward for an interview.
"Within a couple of days I had a job offer in one of the fastest growing companies with a vision to become the largest beverage manufacturer in New Zealand," says Calvin. He is one of four graduates recently employed by Brix & Co. One is in a role similar to Calvin, the other two have gone into marketing and project roles.
Calvin says the position will help him get hands on experience and build a strong mechanical engineering base in order to restart his engineering career in New Zealand. He is full of praise for the AUT talenthub team.
"During the 2020 pandemic - when it was really hard to obtain a job – you guys [AUT talenthub] made it really easy and quick and supported me throughout the process."
AUT talenthub had a record month of candidate placements in September as employers began revisiting their recruitment requirements after a hiring freeze over the COVID-19 lockdowns. Summer internships are also increasing.
"We've seen a lot of roles in engineering, marketing and communications, ICT and design" says Jade.
Large and small organisations are looking for staff for a variety of roles across all sectors. Some businesses have created new roles with graduates and interns in mind because they see them as a better cost option than agencies right now.
"That doesn't mean employers are paying a pittance. They are offering reasonable pay rates for roles that open up positive future opportunities," Jade hastens to add.
"We also get organisations approaching us directly because they have had success with past AUT graduates and have a particular need that fits our graduate profile," says Rachel. "They know we can help them save time and money and take the stress out of the recruitment process," she adds.
The AUT talenthub service is comprehensive, including the writing and posting of job advertisements through the AUT talenthub job board, interviewing of suitable applicants, and presenting a shortlist to the company.
Students are redirected to the Employability Lab if their CVs and cover letters need work or if their interview skills are not up to scratch.
"We all work closely together to deliver a strong candidate to the employer," says Jade. Because she was meeting with students – remotely and on campus - throughout the year she had a good number of students ready to apply for roles once businesses came asking.
"Students and graduates were scared there would not be any jobs, but there are jobs out there, and businesses are growing," says Jade.
Visit internz.aut.ac.nz to find out more