5 Tips To Attract Graduates Into The Public Sector
January 27, 2020

The job market has recently experienced major upheaval. As a result, public sector and non-profit organisations could find it hard to attract the best graduates away from the higher-paying private sector.

However, working in the public sector has some key advantages which you should highlight when advertising available positions.

By the end of this article, you’ll know 5 effective ways to recruit top-class graduates into your organisation. Let’s get started…


How can your organisation attract graduates into the public sector?


Show graduates how they can make a difference

Studies show that Millennial and Gen-Z employees don’t focus solely on the financial rewards of a job. They also want to give back to society by doing work they find ethical, meaningful and fulfilling.

2020 was a year that highlighted the importance of working together for the greater good. Fortunately, public sector roles offer graduates the chance to give back to society.

Consider your employee value proposition (EVP) — what opportunities do you offer your employees? How can you help them make a real difference to the world?

Your organisation probably has an amazing story to tell. Market this to your advantage to attract candidates that genuinely care about your sector.


Polished job adverts and smooth application process

As the age-old saying goes: ‘First impressions count’. So it’s essential to make an instant good impression on every candidate that views your job advert.

Our studies show that 81% of applicants are put off by a poorly-written advert. Taking time to ensure each one is polished and concise, with correct grammar and spelling, will show that you’re a professional and trustworthy organisation. Just one small mistake can cast a negative light over the job posting, so taking these precautions are vital.

This also applies to the application process itself. Our studies also show that 54% of candidates prefer an online application form, with that number likely being much higher among the tech-savvy graduates of today. Are you making it easy for applicants to submit their information?

Finally, test the process from the applicant’s point-of-view. You want every interested individual to apply to give you the best chance of finding the perfect candidate.


Highlight the security of a public sector job

Hundreds of thousands of jobs across the UK were sadly lost due to the 2020 pandemic. A record number of 370,000 redundancies were made between August and October alone, and 1 in 10 young people lost their jobs throughout the entire year.

Fortunately for most public sector workers, their jobs are stable and continue to be so. There’s always a need for teachers, council workers, and emergency services; so the public sector provides one of few opportunities for secure employment.

And, despite the 2021 pay-freeze, the public sector remains an appealing option for graduates. Highlight these benefits and you’ll attract plenty of applications.


Find untapped potential through internships and graduate schemes

Graduate schemes and internships are an excellent way of building relationships with under- and post-graduate students. Many interns will apply for roles within the organisation once their internship is over because they’re familiar with the job.

Schemes such as these are an investment — a way of reaching talented individuals before they enter the job market. They’re also a great way to train employees and avoid “throwing them in the deep end” straight after graduation.

Have a look into the law surrounding internships, advertise opportunities online and reach out to universities to advertise the position internally.


Enrol the skills of public sector recruitment experts

It takes time and effort to find untapped potential and attract graduates into the public sector. This is especially difficult when you’re busy running other aspects of your organisation.

Consider enrolling the talents of a public sector recruitment agency. They have expertise, connections, and resources otherwise unavailable.


JGP connects you with talented graduates looking for jobs.

Our job boards — jobsgopublic, jobsgolondon, SurreyJobs and LGJobs — have a constantly growing audience of over 180,000 registered candidates. Tap into them to reach talent you wouldn’t normally be able to.

We understand how public and non-profit sectors work and how to find your ideal applicant. Get in touch with our team of specialists for more information.

2021 Survival Checklist for Public Sector Employers Free Download

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