UK employers value more than just work-related skills in young people coming out of the education system and into the workplace, according to a study by education charity Central YMCA.
A third also revealed they would value someone who was well-travelled and who had experiences of other cultures, while 34% said that having a keen interest in charity or community work was important.
Only one in 10 respondents in the research believed that young people enter the workforce fully prepared with the skills required to be an efficient employee, however, more than half said young people do tend to be eager to learn and develop their skills.
The charity is now warning that the education system needs to put more focus on soft-skills and personal development, rather than solely prioritising technical skills.
Commenting on the findings of the study Rosi Prescott, chief executive of Central YMCA, said: “It could be argued that the findings of the survey have proven that it’s your CV that gets you the interview but it’s your personality, and life experience, that gets you the job. It’s interesting to see more and more employers recognising and seeking out transferrable skills developed outside the workplace, such as a desire to learn new skills, to read broadly, and to socialise, or keep active with a hobby. These young people will make attractive employees as they will likely be fast learners, knowledgeable of the world around them, and easier to work with on a personal level.