February 15, 2022
Photo: Luis Alvarez / Getty Images
Welcome back to our Workplace newsletter. Today: recent grads in tech, building the metaverse, and mental health in tech.
Despite all the talk of the tech industry’s widening gap between job openings and talent, college graduates are still not securing jobs at the rate of their pre-pandemic predecessors, according to recent data from talent recruiting platform iCIMS.
The newest grads are still competing with graduates from 2020, said Chief People Officer Jewell Parkinson.
Here’s what the landscape looks like from above:
In pre-pandemic times, most organizations hired directly from their intern classes, but a lot of recent grads struggled to land internships during the COVID-19 crisis. Most companies shrunk, postponed or canceled their internships programs in 2020, and this caused a ripple effect wherein grads competed with multiple classes for roles. To have three years of job experience or internships is now unrealistic, and employers will need to readjust expectations to ensure young talent isn’t left behind, said Rhea Moss, director of Data Insights and Customer Intelligence at iCIMS.
Though it’s taking this cohort a longer time to find a job, it’s still a job seeker’s market and “HR professionals expect to pay 22% more for an entry-level salary than in March 2020,” according to iCIMS.
Younger applicants are looking for something different. Some may be surprised to find only 2% of college seniors actually want to work remotely full-time, according to iCIMS’ Class of 2021 report. Most want at least some in-person interaction. They’re looking for an experience many of them didn’t get a chance to have in college, said Moss.
Because of various shifting desires among applicants, it’s taking longer to fill open roles at all levels across tech. By December 2021, iCIMS data revealed the amount of time to fill a tech role had crept up to an average of 54 days.
What the experts say about recruiting recent grads and making sure they’re not overlooked in today’s market:
Mark Zuckerberg has big plans for building the metaverse. The only issue: It requires computing technology that no one knows how to build. It simply does not exist, and it will not exist next year or the year after, wrote my colleague Max A. Cherney. He highlights the disconnect between Big Tech’s excitement for the metaverse and the actual plausibility of creating the computing power to make the metaverse. Entire corporate identities are being fashioned around unseen innovation and the idea that the industry will be able to build the chips, data centers and networking equipment needed for the metaverse. (Perhaps this is a bad time to bring up that we still don’t have enough chips to build things that already exist today.)
The dawn of the tech union
What are the key drivers at play leading tech workers to form unions? What does this mean for employers? How can companies better adapt to the needs of their workers? Protocol’s Anna Kramer will chat with tech unions about their needs, companies about their strategies at the bargaining table and labor experts about how workers and employers can best collaborate at 10 a.m. PT on Feb. 22. RSVP here.
Businesses need applications faster than ever before, and they need them to solve increasingly complex, sophisticated problems. This means IT teams need a more efficient way to quickly deliver powerful software and a better way to partner with their business counterparts. That’s where low-code comes in.
Google is following through on a bunch of new features it announced last year that allow for more seamless integration between its workspace products like Docs and Sheets. Here’s a rundown:
The goal is to bring all the products within Google Workspace closer together. “It’s not enough to have purpose-built products that are good at one thing,” said Vishnu Sivaji, product manager at Google Workspace. “People want these things to work together and they want them to feel seamless.”— Lizzy Lawrence, reporter (email | twitter)
A new study by Qualtrics found many employees link their mental heath to their jobs: unsurprising, considering the thinning boundaries between work and home. Burnout remains as a top issue among employees two years into the pandemic, and “flexibility” is one of the top rallying cries. Qualtrics' recent survey looked at what tech workers and other professionals say they need in order to feel better about their relationship to work. Here are the highlights.
Microsoft is preparing to go back to the office.
Turns out Amazon’s secret sauce is turnover — and lots of it.
Peloton’s new CEO said he doesn’t expect a sale any time in the "foreseeable future."
In China, DiDi will reportedly lay off 20% of its workforce.
A roundup of workplace news from the farthest corners of the internet.
Some of IBM’s top execs are involved in an age discrimination case after it was found that they engaged in discussions about reducing the number of older employees.
People still appear to be more comfortable going to brunch than returning to physical offices.
Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Have a great day, see you Thursday.