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Article

Timothy Oluwafemi Ayodele, Oluseyi Joshua Adegoke, Kahilu Kajimo-Shakantu and Olaitan Olaoye

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the soft skill gap of graduate employees, as well as the factors influencing the skill gaps of real estate graduates in the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the soft skill gap of graduate employees, as well as the factors influencing the skill gaps of real estate graduates in the employment of real estate firms in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

Primary data were employed for the study. Close-ended questionnaire served on real estate employers in the two major property markets of Nigeria: Lagos and Abuja. From a total of 343 questionnaires administered, 172 (59.7%) questionnaires were retrieved. While data from the graduate employees were obtained via a web-based survey sent out to a total of 558 graduates, 119 (21.33%) responses were received. Descriptive and inferential statistical techniques were employed in the data analysis.

Findings

The findings showed that employers had high expectations for soft skillsets relating to responsibility, administrative, listening and communication skills. These have respective mean scores of 6.38, 6.33, 6.31 and 6.31 on a seven point scale. However, the results revealed significant skill gaps with skills such as logical thinking, business negotiation, responsibility and marketing. Further, the analysis revealed that factors influencing the skill gap, in decreasing order of influence, are training/professional mentors/remuneration, personal preferences/industry characteristics and curriculum/faculties.

Practical implications

Real estate graduate soft skills are investigated to uncover areas of emphasis and skill gaps. These outcomes could serve as important feedbacks for stakeholders towards improving real estate teaching and curriculum. The findings could also assist real estate graduates to know employers areas of emphasis in relation to graduate employability skills.

Originality/value

Extant studies have reiterated and evaluated the soft skills gaps based on the perceptions of employers, faculties and institutions of higher learning. However, there is the need to investigate the perception of graduate employees, being the recipient and major stakeholders in the training process.

Details

Property Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-7472

Keywords

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Article

Timothy Oluwafemi Ayodele, Timothy Tunde Oladokun and Kahilu Kajimo-Shakantu

The global shift in the traditional skills required of real estate graduates has led to an increased demand for employees who have the required skills and competencies…

Abstract

Purpose

The global shift in the traditional skills required of real estate graduates has led to an increased demand for employees who have the required skills and competencies. The purpose of this study is to evaluate employment considerations of real estate firms and analyse employers’ skill expectations and the observed skills possessed by the graduate employees. This study also analysed the self-assessed soft skill levels of the graduate employees, thereby establishing the skill gap.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were sought from real estate employers in the two dominant real estate markets of Nigeria: Lagos and Abuja, and real estate graduate employees who have had a minimum of six months working experience in real estate firms. Data collected were analysed using statistical techniques such as frequency, percentages, mean, correlation, multivariate analysis of variance, paired-samples t-test and independent samples t-test.

Findings

The findings of this study revealed that employers’ soft skills expectations were high with skills such as responsibility, administrative, listening, communication, business negotiation and work ethics. Based on employers' observed skills, there were significant skill gaps with respect to soft skills such as responsibility, business negotiation, logical thinking, marketing and dispute resolution. An analysis of the core skills reveals employers' preference for technical competencies in valuation, agency, property management, marketing, report writing and landlord and tenant laws. However, graduate employees possessed significant skill gaps with regards to technical skills such as valuation, property investment analysis, feasibility and viability appraisal, market research methods and facility management.

Practical implications

An understanding of the skill gaps will provide useful feedback to professional bodies, regulatory boards, institutions of higher learning, faculty members and other stakeholders regarding deficient skill areas, especially for curriculum review, development and training in the real estate sector.

Originality/value

There is a paucity of information about employers' skill preferences and the skill gaps in the real estate sector.

Details

Journal of Facilities Management , vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1472-5967

Keywords

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Article

Neha Bhatnagar

The purpose of this study is to review scholarly research on employability and skill gap in the context of the Master of Business Administration (MBA) education in India…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to review scholarly research on employability and skill gap in the context of the Master of Business Administration (MBA) education in India. This paper provides an overview of the critical themes and identifies research gaps for future investigations.

Design/methodology/approach

Published empirical studies were reviewed and thematically analysed using NVivo 11 Pro.

Findings

In addition to technical aptitudes and skills, organisations also seek other attributes that are associated with employability, such as communication, emotional intelligence, critical thinking, problem-solving skills and interpersonal skills. Communication is an important skill frequently cited in the literature. Additionally, themes related to reasons for skill gaps are identified.

Practical implications

Soft skills and non-technical aptitudes should be emphasised in MBA education. Furthermore, significant reforms in MBA education programmes should be implemented in India to make graduates industry-ready.

Originality/value

Several studies have been carried out to verify the existence of and reasons for skill gaps amongst MBA graduates in India. Through integrative literature review, the issue of skill gap is discussed. Future research directions are also recommended in this paper.

Details

Industrial and Commercial Training, vol. 53 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0019-7858

Keywords

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Article

Noor Al-Shehab, Mukhtar AL-Hashimi, Araby Madbouly, Sameh Reyad and Allam Hamdan

Managers claim that fresh graduates are unequipped to meet market demands. The aim of this study is to investigate the perception of employers in retail Islamic banks of…

Abstract

Purpose

Managers claim that fresh graduates are unequipped to meet market demands. The aim of this study is to investigate the perception of employers in retail Islamic banks of Bahrain on newly graduated business students. The Singaporean Model of Employability Skills was implemented, to ascertain the mean ratings of employability skills in terms of their importance and the competency of business graduates.

Design/methodology/approach

This deductive research approach initiated with a literature review that identifies research gap and a model that was tested via a self-administration adopted survey by collected data from 220 senior employees at retail Islamic banks of Bahrain

Findings

The systematic of convenience sampling technique was used in selecting 161 samples and the researcher received only 85 completed questionnaire forms. Findings initiate that employers appreciated the importance of teamwork, risk management and decision-making skills. Their main recommendation was that employers should establish a durable bond with universities to enhance employability skills.

Originality/value

Because the researcher gathered all data from employers of different Islamic banks in Bahrain, this sector in addition will get the advantage of the results that banks will formulate their strategic plans accordingly to tackle the business graduates’ weaknesses. Likewise, universities and researchers might be motivated to look into new innovative methods that assist graduates to accommodate with market conditions.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

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Article

Duc Phan, Prem Yapa and Ha Thanh Nguyen

This paper compares and contrasts graduate accountant skills and employers' expectations in South East Asia (SEA).

Abstract

Purpose

This paper compares and contrasts graduate accountant skills and employers' expectations in South East Asia (SEA).

Design/methodology/approach

We analyse the employers' expectation performance gap (EPG) in three countries – Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam – to provide a reflection on current professional accounting development in SEA. The study relies on data derived from multiple sources including job advertisements, CIMA “ready for business” project, Glassdoor website and other secondary data sources.

Findings

The findings indicate that over recent decades, the changing nature of the economy, state, and interest of the business sector (including the “Big Four”) have led to the wider adoption of professional accountancy qualifications. The findings suggest that graduates should be equipped with active learning activities such as project-based and work-integrated training to fill the expectation gaps between local university educators and employers.

Research limitations/implications

Drawing upon a literature review of professional accounting education, we use the results of the documentations and secondary analysis to describe the performance expectation gap of accounting education in SEA.

Originality/value

The study indicates a large discrepancy between the teachings in accounting education and employer requirements in Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia and propose different methods to fill this employability gap in South East Asia.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 63 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

Keywords

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Article

Farhad Khurshid Abbasi, Amjad Ali and Naila Bibi

The purpose of this paper is to identify the gap between skills expected by managers and skills possessed by business graduates employed by banking industry.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the gap between skills expected by managers and skills possessed by business graduates employed by banking industry.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire-based survey was conducted with bank officers under whom fresh business graduates were working. They were asked to indicate the importance of 12 employability skills in the industry and to rate business graduates working under them against these skills. Results are achieved by applying paired samples and independent samples t-tests on data collected from 121 bank officers.

Findings

Results prove that overall employability skills of the graduates are lesser than expected by the managers. Significant skill gaps were found for listening, problem solving, communication, leadership, interpersonal, analytical, self-management, numeracy and critical thinking. Results also reveal that problem-solving skill of male graduates is superior that that of females.

Practical implications

The study makes business graduates clear in what skills they are to learn and how it relates to the expectations of managers in banking industry. It helps business schools to revise and improve curriculum of some specialized banking programs according to the needs of the industry.

Originality/value

This is the first study that investigates the skills required by the banking industry out of business graduates. It also identifies the skill gaps for fresh business graduates from managerial perspective in banking industry of Pakistan.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 60 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article

Denise Jackson and Elaine Chapman

The need for “job‐ready” graduates has catalysed the development of non‐technical skills in higher education institutions worldwide. Continued criticism of business school…

Abstract

Purpose

The need for “job‐ready” graduates has catalysed the development of non‐technical skills in higher education institutions worldwide. Continued criticism of business school outcomes has provoked this examination of non‐technical skill deficiencies in Australian business graduates. The purpose of this paper is to compare findings with existing literature on skill gaps in other developed, culturally‐similar economies, underscore the generality of identified problems, and highlight to stakeholders in undergraduate education those areas requiring curricula review.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 211 managers/supervisors of business graduates and 156 business academics assessed the typical performance levels of Australian business graduates against a comprehensive framework of 20 skills and 45 associated workplace behaviours. Ratings were examined within and across the two samples and variations analysed by work area, business activity and business discipline.

Findings

Some differences were detected between academic and employer skill ratings of certain workplace behaviours. Respondents agreed that although graduates are confident and proficient in certain non‐technical skills, they are deficient in vital elements of the managerial skill set. There were differences in employer ratings across certain business activities and work areas but none detected in academic ratings from different business disciplines.

Originality/value

Findings broadly align with literature from previous studies, highlighting the generality of presented skill deficiencies. The study suggests that although business schools are producing well‐rounded graduates, they are overlooking the development of certain non‐technical skills deemed essential in managers. This urges curricula reform and raises questions on who is responsible for developing work readiness in graduates. The implications of differing perceptions of graduate performance are discussed.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 54 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article

Fátima Suleman and Ana Maria Costa Laranjeiro

Available literature overlooks the factors that affect employers’ opinions of the skills graduates bring to the labour market. The purpose of this paper is to examine the…

Abstract

Purpose

Available literature overlooks the factors that affect employers’ opinions of the skills graduates bring to the labour market. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between the perception of graduatesskills and the employers’ anticipative and remedial strategies.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative multiple case study is used and data were gathered from interviews with human resource managers in ten firms in Portugal. The data set includes information on perceptions of graduatesskills, solutions for the acquisition of skills, hiring and training policies, and practices associated with university–industry linkages.

Findings

Almost all the employers sampled are unsatisfied with graduates’ preparation in soft skills and other personal traits. Some report skill shortages and gaps in technical skills that result in training costs. The perception of technical skills varies according to anticipative and remedial strategies.

Research limitations/implications

This is an explorative study with a very small sample of firms. However, it is a first step towards further research into whether the perception of graduatesskills is affected by anticipative and remedial strategies implemented by firms within a particular human resource development system.

Practical implications

It is argued that the responsibility for graduates’ employability should be shared. Practitioners should learn how to interact with higher education, researchers should profit from insights into typologies of employers’ strategies on skill formation, and policy makers should understand that employers are heterogeneous and there is no one-size-fits-all solution.

Social implications

Universities, employers and policy makers should understand that the employability of graduates presupposes shared responsibility.

Originality/value

The relationship between the strategies employers adopt to access skills and their perception of graduatesskills is a quite underexplored topic.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 60 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

Keywords

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Article

Mohd Adam Suhaimi, Muhammad Rabiul Hasan, Husnayati Hussin and Asadullah Shah

The purposes of the study are to understand ICT workforce employability in Malaysia, to identify the causes that influence the growth of skill gaps in the ICT workforce…

Abstract

Purpose

The purposes of the study are to understand ICT workforce employability in Malaysia, to identify the causes that influence the growth of skill gaps in the ICT workforce, and to determine ways to reduce these gaps.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology of the study comprised project reports and a literature review.

Findings

The findings show that not only Malaysia but also Australia and India are facing the challenges of demand‐supply gap as regards a quality ICT‐related workforce. The study also indicates that these countries do have similar obstacles and issues of sufficiently trained and experienced ICT graduates.

Practical implications

This study suggests that in the light of the skills demanded by industries and organizations, ICT workers could be trained through an updated course curriculum in line with the needs of industry.

Originality/value

The employability of the workforce in general has been discussed in many papers. This paper specifically discusses employability issues of the information and communication technology (ICT) workforce, and provides values to ICT educators and employers, as well as to potential ICT graduates.

Details

Campus-Wide Information Systems, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1065-0741

Keywords

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Article

Jessica Lichy and Tatiana Khvatova

In the international graduate job market, education–job mismatches are affecting recruitment, and consequently efficiency. The purpose of this paper is to identify a…

Abstract

Purpose

In the international graduate job market, education–job mismatches are affecting recruitment, and consequently efficiency. The purpose of this paper is to identify a widening gap in “global operating skills”, then put forward a structure for addressing the education–job mismatch, based on data gathered from higher education teachers and graduate recruiters. Framed as a case examining the contemporary context in Russia, the objective is to identify a cross-cultural management (CCM) skills set for graduates who are pursuing a career in an international environment. The study therefore has implications for managers and educators who work in this sector.

Design/methodology/approach

The study identifies a number of factors that need to be taken into account for developing CCM competence among graduate job seekers. Set in the specific case of a Russian higher education institutions and one of its international partners, stakeholder theory is used for theoretical underpinning and data collection. A qualitative-oriented mixed-methods approach was designed to: explore the education–job mismatch by using documentary sources and direct observations; collect data in a three-step sequence (focus groups, interviews and interactive seminar).

Findings

The key findings revealed the extent of the education–job mismatch. Specifically: a lack of transferable CCM skills, mismatch between the provision of CCM skills development in higher education and the needs of recruiters, and curriculum shortfall in terms of CCM skills. Furthermore, areas such as cross-cultural communication and cross-cultural awareness require urgent attention; new approaches are needed to enhance the knowledge transfer of CCM skills to students, in order to better equip them to work in an increasingly international workplace.

Research limitations/implications

The enquiry provides a snapshot of knowledge transfer regarding CCM skills based on a particular case, from the perspective of teachers and recruiters. While care was taken to respect the language and cultural norms, the interview guide captured only a narrow dimension of the subject area. The modest size of the sample does not allow any generalisations when interpreting the data. The findings should not be applied to other national contexts, disciplines or sectors.

Practical implications

The authors put forward actions for enhancing the implementation of an international education programme (IEP), emphasising the importance of co-creating with stakeholders. The distinguishing features of an IEP are identified and a framework for explaining the opportunities generated by such a programme is developed. Failing to address the “skills gap” may trigger long-term ramifications for both business and society.

Social implications

Academics and students claim to be dissatisfied with the current delivery of CCM skills. The identification of an education–job mismatch implies that CCM skills are not being effectively transmitted within higher education. This study sets out to identify and explain the current situation of CCM skills development in contemporary society. The genesis of this study stems from the topical debate surrounding reconceptualising higher education to reflect a more international-oriented approach.

Originality/value

Research into CCM is frequently undertaken from an Anglo-centric perspective, or sets out to compare an “Anglo” environment with a non-Anglo setting. Few CCM studies are set in the context of a contemporary Post-Soviet society.

Details

Journal of Management Development, vol. 38 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0262-1711

Keywords

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