An Adecco company representative (L) speaks a Kyiv Post Employment Fair participant at the Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce on Sept. 22 About 20 companies and 2,000 people attended
© Kostyantyn Chernichkin
The Kyiv Post Employment Fair has been bringing employers and job applicants together for many years. At the latest one on Sept. 22, in which 2,000 people and 20 companies participated, the newspaper heard several suggestions for how to improve the event in the future.
Here are some of them:
- The Employment Fair should last for two days, not just one;
- Set up a Student’s Corner for talks with company reps, HR trainings and presentations;
- Workshops on how to prepare a proper CV should be interactive, giving everyone a chance to create their own resumes on their laptops or at the training center;
- Invite more top companies from the banking, finance, design and linguistic sectors;
- Internships and part-time offers should be separated from full-time job offers;
- Make a conference room available for job interviews at the fair;
- Have more job offers from the Kyiv Post itself;
- Send invitations directly to universities to attract more students.
“We appreciate these suggestions,” said Kyiv Post CEO Michael Willard. “We will try to incorporate as many of them as possible in future fairs and we welcome new and better ideas all the time.” Willard added that anyone can write to email@example.com and make suggestions on how to improve the fair or any other part of Kyiv Post’s operations.
Herman Ovcharenko, the head of SuperJob.ua portal, said the fair attracts a great number of students looking for part-time jobs or internships. “But I need to warn the (students): the most important thing for young employees is to get experience, not big salaries,” he said.
Lack of experience is the biggest problem among Ukrainian graduates.
Oksana Gavryliyk, a graduate of the Kyiv Hotel Management College, said she has not been able to find anything in Kyiv for two months. “I want to work as a salesperson,” Gavryliyk said. “But I have no experience, so it is a bit difficult.”
Gavryliyk is among 16.8 percent of young adults who have failed to find a job in over two months of searching, according to a study by Headhunter.ua, another employment website. Ovcharenko suggests students start working while still enrolled in college to gain experience. “You need to emphasize your personal achievements and have some professional background during the job interview, so start work as soon as possible,” Ovcharenko said.
This message was reinforced by Headhunter expert Mykhailo Avdyushkin during a workshop on optimal job searching. Avdyushkin also gave pointers on how to properly structure a CV and tips for succeeding in a job interview. “Many visitors wanted to know how to increase one’s chances to get a suitable job; in other words what to do and not to do during a job interview,” Avdyushkin said.
The most sought after jobs unsurprisingly include information technology specialists and sales managers, shows the SuperJob.ua database. “There are also good chances to find work as a (search engine optimization specialist), engineer and copywriter,” Ovcharenko added.
Those fluent in English (as well as German, French, Spanish or Polish) could try out for summer internships at Astapov law firm, a newcomer to the fair. Iryna Andreeva, Astapov’s human resources manager, said the internships will help students gain professional skills and are the first steps toward landing a dream job. “Our candidates are becoming more particular and so we need to offer not only a work station, but a place where they can be happy and show off their professional skills and dedication,” Andreeva said.
But the job market is far from perfect, employees say.
Only one in six Ukrainians are happy with their jobs, according to a Headhunters study. Valeriy Matviychuk hopes he can become one of them. Matviychuk has been looking to teach English or German since 2009 after finishing his studies.
“I used to have some internship or freelance, but no official work,” Matviychuk said. “ I hope to find something interesting as an interpreter here, so I visited the fair rather often. But I’m almost desperate, because I know three languages and cannot find a place to work up to now. I gave my CV to some companies I am interested in. The fair is a good chance to talk to the companies’ representatives and to get useful contacts.”
Kyiv Post staff writer Olena Goncharova can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.