Survey: 75% of Employers Want Candidates with Relevant Experience

Relevant experience is so important to the job search.

Almost 75% of employers taking part in NACE’s 2012 Job Outlook survey said they prefer to hire candidates who have relevant experience, while only 4% said experience doesn’t factor into their decision when hiring new college grads. Beyond employer’s preference, there are many reasons why work experience is important to have before you finally land that full-time position.

Here are a few of them:

You Learn How to Act in a Professional Setting

My internships have taught me how to fit in at work, even when I’m the youngest person in the office. Be courteous and always offer to help out. Dress for the part—more professional is always better than not professional enough. Study the people around you for tips on how to be professional.

You Get Exposure to Things You’d Never Learn in the Classroom

There is only so much professors can teach you. With internship or work experience, you get to work with clients and see how things are really done—not just study them. For example, in my classes we put together press releases, interview classmates for articles and hold mock press conferences. Through my internships I’ve gotten to do those things in the “real world”– and learned more than I ever could have learned in class.

You Discover How You Prefer to Work with Peers and Managers

Although you may have experienced some group work through class assignments, it is nothing like getting to know what managerial style you prefer. Perhaps you like a lot of feedback or a manager who gives you freedom to be creative. These are things you can find out from work experience.

Internships or part-time positions can also lead to full-time positions. 42% of 2011 college hires came from their own internship programs, according to a separate NACE study on internships.

For more information on the NACE survey, visit




For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at!

About the Author: Dana Schwartz is a senior studying public relations and management at Syracuse University. She has previous internship experience with a small New York City public relations firm, as a communications intern for the Special Olympics in London, and in healthcare marketing. She is looking forward to starting a career in public relations having recently graduated in May. Follow Dana on Twitter!



This entry was posted in Internships, Job Search and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.