Study of the Month: Apprentice Recruiting Trends 2023

lesley rudolph

Lesley Rudolph

August 13, 2023 • 4 minutes read

Every year, u-form test systems conduct a comprehensive survey providing up-to-date insights into apprentice recruiting and training in Germany, utilizing a dual-perspective approach. We have taken a closer look at the 2023 study and summarized the key findings. The top three themes? Recruiting channels, key figures, and communication. But see for yourself!

Studie des Monats: Azubi-Recruiting Trends 2023

In general, training seems to hold a high value for both companies and young individuals. On the one hand, 58% of surveyed companies plan to hire the same number of apprentices next year as currently, and 37% even plan to hire more. At the same time, 25% of young individuals would recommend to their friends to pursue vocational training after school, followed by a 22% recommendation rate for dual vocational training and only 4% for a university degree.

However, the training market remains a market with more supply than demand. In general, young individuals can relatively flexibly choose their training positions, with an increasing number of training positions remaining unfilled. The reason for this staffing problem? 50% of Gen Z individuals see the lack of career guidance in schools as the main factor. This is echoed by 45% of companies.

For companies, the quest for talent is all about being present on the right channels. The choice of recruiting channels depends on various factors, including the target audience of apprentices, the company's industry, and regional conditions. An effective strategy could involve using multiple channels to achieve broad coverage and effectively reach the target audience.

The hype around social media in recruiting continues, but the landscape has shifted from Facebook to Instagram and has now reached TikTok. Interestingly, 79% of companies utilize social media for recruiting, even though only 11% of young individuals actively use social media for job searches. However, when it comes to the application process, young individuals prefer not to apply in video form; instead, 83% express a preference for online applications.

Regarding the channels, which lead to most recruitments, the internal career website takes the lead. This makes sense, as talents who engage with the company through this channel already demonstrate active interest. Next in line are traditional channels such as job fairs and the employment agency.

Recruiting Optimization Based on Real Metrics

One of the surprises from this year's survey is undoubtedly that only 33% of companies use recruiting KPIs to optimize their apprentice recruitment. The rest seems to operate more on intuition. Yet, as always, the principle applies: Only real metrics allow for an analysis and optimization of current processes. Without this foundation, crucial insights are missed, and strategic decision-making becomes limited.

This is how social media recruiting works

Recruiting through social media is a form of active sourcing and benefits from the fact that nowadays almost everyone has a profile on one or more social platforms. We explain what matters in this process and which factors should be considered.

social media recruiting

This is how the right approach looks

Let's assume you as a company already optimize your recruiting based on meaningful KPIs, and you can also present a well-functioning mix of channels. Young people largely agree, as 62% of respondents want to work in a company where informal address is not only used, but also common. However, in practice, only 32% of companies actually use informal address throughout.

So much for internal corporate culture. But how can external communication look to make young people feel addressed and envision an apprenticeship position in your company? Our tip: Address topics that actively engage the target audience and thus show that the challenges of youth have a place in the company.

For example, 56% of the younger generation expresses fear of inflation and rising living costs. This is by far the biggest fear, followed by the increasing risk of war in Europe and climate change and its consequences, each with 16%. As a consequence, you as a company could communicate things like apprenticeship compensation openly and transparently.

By the way, you can download the entire study here.

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