Employability is taken as the skills, understandings and personal attributes that make one more likely to not only to gain employment but also be successful in ones chosen occupation. Employability benefits the individual, the employer, the workforce, the community and the economy.
To date almost all emphasis has been on the subject discipline. But the recruiters see qualification in a different way. Rarely is the academic achievement the only, or even the most important, attribute of a candidate or an employee. In many circumstances the qualification is necessary, but not sufficient reason for someone to be recruited. The qualification is regarded as the minimum requirement. It is often regarded as a box ticking exercise that gets the applicant ‘in the door’ of the interview.
It is being increasingly recognized that what really sells the candidate to the employer are the, so-called, ‘soft skills’. According to studies employers tend to value generic skills more highly than disciplinary based understanding and skills. Employability is designed to assist the individual to function in a job, not just in the acquisition of a job – ‘To be employed is to be at risk. To be employable is to be secure.’
Employability of a graduate is the propensity of the graduate to exhibit attributes that employers anticipate will be necessary for the future effective functioning of their organization.