We received 8 responses to our employer survey– of these 75% were already aware of the HCUK Employability Seal, although all consider it to be useful it was explained to them. None of the were aware of Open Badges prior to the project but 75% said they looked on websites/social media for more information about job applicants, which 2 naming LinkedIn, 1 Twitter and 2 other websites.
Open Badges: an Employers viewpoint
Through being part of this project, I have learned what an Open Badge is and am able to see its potential to support employers in identifying students with appropriate employability skills whilst maintaining the integrity and appropriate security in an online environment. Employers regularly search social media for more information on applicants and these badges could also be flagged through blogs, websites and online CVs.
During the last year, the HCUK Progression Passport has continued to evolve and work has been done, in consultation with employers, to further define the skills sets, project work, work experience, participation in volunteering etc. to embed a framework of demonstrable skills. The Employability Skills Open Badge provides an online representation of the skills they have developed and their level of work readiness. I think the Open Badge aspect will continue to support the HCUK Passport by allowing students to more easily display their Seal through online media and this could support the embedding of the HCUK Employability Seal within recruitment and on the job assessment in the local business community. It would be useful to see the College offer other Open Badges for example badge students who have acquired specific skills.
As awareness of Open Badge increases within society as a whole, this will assist in promoting the HCUK Passport model through the technology’s connectivity with social media channels. As Open Badges become more widely used, students will be able to use them to display to employers a collection of badges showing educational attainment from a range of different institutions plus achievements through other organisations such as volunteering awards. It would be particularly useful if job-specific websites, develop the ability to allow applicants to link to their Open Badges in their profile and also if it were possible for employers to search a website that could list students with particular badges and allow a contact email to be sent encouraging them to apply for vacancies.
Donna Edgar – Sental Recruitment Ltd
Aside from being the Director of a very successful recruitment business, Donna also gives her time for free to For Entrepreneurs Only (FEO) by offering advice and guidance to new and established companies looking to expand. Donna is also a previous Governor for The Hull College Group which looks after over 31000 students across the UK