Let’s take the case of two young women, both Marketing and Management graduates, who, aftter giving it a lot of thought, decided to work in a call-center. Little by little, their achievements got them noticed and they ascended hyerarchically, one in the same firm, one in a client-company.

These are rather isolated cases. “Only 5% of recent graduates accept jobs below their educational formation. There are two reasons for this lack of flexibility: an excessive overconfidence and a specific mentality” says Mihaela Tudorancea, managing partner, Tudorancea &Partners human resources company. She goes into detail: there were times when “having a degree” guaranteed above-average earnings, a safe job and other facilities, such as a swifter dwelling arrangement. Hence, the typical Romanian family should have among its members at least one “learned person”.


Only one third of graduates find a suiting workplace


Not a lot of graduates find a suiting job. “Year by year, only some 30%-35% of youngsters are able to find a workplace that fits their education during the first 12 months after graduation. This rate is reckoned as compared with the entire graduates pool, thus including Medicine and IT, where there is an employment rate of 40%-45%. Some of the pettier universities report more modest rates, some of the colleges “boasting” a near-null rate”, Mihaela Tudorancea explains. How are things on the other side? Do companies embrace over-qualified candidates? There are usually two types of answers in this respect: either the candidate will accept a position that requires higher education, though lower-ranked than the previous job, or he will settle for a workplace that doesn’t require higher education at all.      


The overqualification angst


In the first case, the company will most probably show the “overqualification angst”, fearing that a too-skilled candidate will do more harm than good. “A former product manager applies for an engineer position and the employer rejects him. There is this idea that, once the economy will bounce back (which I think it won’t happen too soon), the respective employee will leave the company, thus leaving a large gap behind”, says Daniela Necefor, CEO, Total Business Solutions. „In my opinion, even if he’ll leave after only six months, there shouldn’t be any regrets, as long as during this time he worked efficiently, adding a strength to the company structure”.

On the other hand, working on a blue collar position can prove pretty difficult for a white collar. According to Daniela Necefor, “it depends from one casee to another. Even if he graduated from the, let’s say, thermal machines faculty, an engineer will have trouble starting a turbine engine unless he repeated this procedure a hundred times”. In her opinion, the best measure to be taken in this respect would be reviving the old tradition of apprenticeship, so popular during the interwar period, then “borrowed” by the communists. That would imply that companies contracted students at vocational schools, covered some facilities (food, dwelling, a monthly salary), in exchange for their signed commitment to work for the respective firm for a certain number of years.   


Less vacancies in 2014


According to data made available by the National Agency for Employment (NAE), „between January and August there were 440,636 openings, out of which 57,878 were repeatedly posted by employers”. By comparison, during the same time last year, there were 489,158 vacancies, out of which only 53,690 were posted repeatedly.

NAE statistics show that, between January and August, these were the professions with the most openings: unskilled workers in the clothing industry (1,960 vacancies), retail workers (1,790 vacancies), sellers (1,753 vacancies), unskilled workers in assembling and fitting parts (1,685), truck drivers (1,520), commodity handlers (1,515), building implosion (1,465), textile workers (1,455), security guards (1,145), car/van drivers (959).