Why has BSCF included educational activities and cooperation with universities and high schools among its priorities?
We want to raise awareness of our sector among the general public in Slovakia and specifically among the students as we see them as our potential future employees. We also want to bring added value in the partnership with our stakeholders in the education sector through projects which help the students and teachers increase their skillset.
What are the skills that fresh graduates entering the labor market lack the most when it comes to landing a job at a Shared Service Center?
Typically students have general education or they are good when it comes to hard skills. But we see a lack of soft skills, communication in foreign languages (primarily English), practical skills and work experience.
Do lacking soft skills currently present a bigger problem for the employers than the insufficient number of candidates from technical universities?
It is combination of both problems. We encounter students from the technical universities who don’t put much emphasis on soft skills as well as students of human sciences with strong soft skills or foreign languages but a lack of technical or analytical skills. Ideally, the candidates should have a bit of both and then they can learn a lot on the job.
Could you briefly describe the idea behind the “Skills for Success - from University to Workplace” course?
Soft skills are one of the key abilities we require from our employees – business partnership, presentation skills, communication, engagement, etc. We perceive this area as a good development opportunity for the students and we came up with the idea of launching our own university course with business representatives in the role of instructors. Another important aspect of this project was to agree on the course syllabus among the BSC forum members. Our companies have a variety of job profiles, but we all require soft skills from the fresh graduates. So the internal discussion was smooth and we easily found synergy in the content.
How do you evaluate it so far and what are the plans for the years to come?
The course has received very good feedback from the students, the university management and BSC companies. We already have several success stories of course graduates who ended up in our business centers. We even invite these fresh new employees to the course to present their career path and how this course helped them in the business environment. We definitely want to continue with this successful project and we have the appetite to expand to more universities.
Peter Galamboš, Financial Analysis Consultant at Dell