The problem with fresh grads

PETALING JAYA: Poor attitude -including asking for too much money – is the chief reason why employers shy away from hiring fresh graduates. Another common complaint is that many graduates are poor in English.
A survey by online recruitment agency showed that 55% of employers cited unrealistic expectations of salaries while 48% of them said poor English was the main reason why Malaysian fresh graduates from both public and private institutions remain unemployed.

“While previous surveys named poor English as the main cause for unemployment, bad attitude has now topped the list,” said its chief operating officer Suresh Thiru.

He said their attitudes were so bad that some did not even bother to inform the companies if they were running late or unable to attend scheduled interviews.

It was announced that the number of jobless graduates had increased from 65,500 to 71,600 although the overall unemployment rate had dropped from 3.4% last year to 3.1% during the first quarter of this year.

Another study by recruitment agency Kelly Services showed that fresh graduates asked for flexible working hours and expected their work to accommodate their personal life, not vice versa.

Its marketing director Jeannie Khoo said employers were also turned off by the lackadaisical attitude and lack of drive to improve among many of them.
“They have the misconception that they can earn high salaries at entry-level. They enter the banking industry expecting to earn RM3,000 while the market rate is only RM2,200,” she said.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Malaysia head of recruitment Salika Suksuwan said some candidates had many offers in hand but acted unprofessionally in rejecting job offers – by not turning up for interviews or the first day at work.

“We sometimes have to call them and remind them about a scheduled interview when they didn’t turn up,” she said.

Talent Corp CEO Johan Mahmood Merican urged fresh graduates not to make demands on their salary.

“It is more important to join a company that can develop your skills and prepare you for future opportunities,” he said.

In a related development, Human Resource Deputy Minister Datuk Maznah Mazlan said half of the applicants who registered with the JobsMalaysia portal ( had found employment.

Speaking when launching the Graduan Aspire 2011 employment fair yesterday, she said about 300,000 job applicants were currently registered with the website.

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