(Original post by Genocidal)
As someone who owns a business, I'll put my point of view forward. I work with two other people who I already knew prior to starting, but the point is I have experience working with others in a business setting.
In a lot of firms it will be a myth. Why? Well what the government and the media seem to forget is that we are not here for the benefit of young people. We are here for the benefit of our own businesses. The question you have to ask yourself is why would a business take a chance on someone with nothing to show for it over someone with lots of experience? Why should we take the risk? If it goes wrong nobody is going to give us any financial compensation for someone messing up, but the person who messed up will just go elsewhere.
The media like to tout that we all have moral responsibilities to give young people a chance, blah, blah, blah. But as someone who knows other people who also run their own businesses, they couldn't give a rats ass. They are here for themselves. Surviving is hard enough as it is, so they are not going to turn down a qualified person are they?
So with the good will and moral obligations argument out of the window, what can we do?
Well the answer is you have to get experience. Now you can go through the normal voluntary channels and other part-time jobs, that's totally fine. But you're never going to beat someone who has experience at a higher level. That's just a fact of life.
The problem with many graduates who are unemployed is that they have nothing going for them. I read a report about a year ago on the BBC that was talking to employers who concluded that many graduates don't have any basic working skills. And judging by many students who have never had a job, this is going to be true. A degree only means so much. Work experience is everything. And yes, you will have to do unpaid work to get that experience. If firms could pay students during their work experience then that would be great, but the real world doesn't work like that.
So at the moment all young people have is the unpaid experience route or getting in via family connections. What the government has to do is create initiatives to allow students to get work experience. This can either come through subsidising firms to allow young people to work there, and by that I mean they pay their wages. Alternatively, they can offer unpaid work experience for the public good, as in companies that are not private companies because that's just taking advantage.
There's one thing that's certain, though. The jobs market is tough and it will remain tough for years and years to come. Many people in this generation will have awful and unfulfilling working lives over this, and it really is tragic.