How many years of experience you need to land an ‘entry-level’ job by industry

Our recent post revealing that candidates are required to have an average of three years of experience to get hired for an entry-level position stirred up some debate on social media. (You can read that story here.)

How can a job be ‘entry-level’ if you already have to have three years of experience to do it? And where can you gain that experience in the first place? It’s tough. That is why the unemployment rate for young people is consistently much higher than the overall average. Your first jobs are the most difficult to get hired for.

To shed more light on the situation, we took a deeper dive into the data to see just how much experience is typically required in job postings by industry. (This research was conducted by the team at TalentWorks who studied the content from 100,000 job ads. You can read the details of the study and their methodology here.)

How many years of experience you need to get hired for entry-level jobs by sector

Fast Food Workers1.24 years
Dispatch & Operations1.50 years
Retail Sales Rep1.59 years
Drafting, Engineering, Mapping Tech1.63 years
Other Sales years1.68 years
Other Office Support Specialist1.72 years
Services Sales Rep1.74 years
Info & Record Clerks1.89 years
Bartenders & Waiters1.90 years
Legal Support Workers1.94 years
Physical & Social Science Technician1.99 years
Secretary & Admin Assistant2.01 years
Media Production Specialist2.10 years
Sales Rep years2.12 years
Protective Service Workers2.25 years
Nursing/Home Health2.27 years
Media/Comms/PR2.42 years
Financial Specialist2.58 years
Health Technicians2.67 years
Healthcare Support2.67 years
Financial Clerk2.73 years
Business Operations Specialist2.86 years
Physical Scientist2.93 years
Engineer2.97 years
Counselors, Social Workers2.98 years
Designers & Visual Artists3.30 years
Admin Support Supervisor3.36 years
Lawyers & Judges3.73 years
Computer Occupation3.82 years
Math/Science Occupation3.91 years
Other Teacher/Instructor4.26 years
Medical Practitioner5.07 years

So, where can you get your first few crucial years of experience? How can you get started? Another study of recent college and university graduates recently uncovered the most common first jobs they end up working in their first few years after leaving school. The good news is, we have positions open for all of those roles available right now on CareerBeacon.

The other key takeaway is that you usually only need to have about 50 per cent or the requirements listed in a job posting in order to land an interview. So, if you are confident that you can do the job – even if you don’t quite have all of the experience requested – then apply anyway and state your case.

Source: TalentWorks: 61% of “Entry-Level” Jobs Require 3+ Years of Experience.

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