Small businesses have room for young talent to shine

Small businesses have room for young talent to shine

< Back to Articles | Topics: Skilled workforce

Halifax-based management consulting firm Barrington Consulting is landing new business and learning new things as a result of three important hires, all of whom are recent university graduates.

“Being able to hire new grads has offered us a new outlook,” says Nadia Dajani, Associate Partner at Barrington. “They have given us the opportunity to expand our service offerings and clientele base.”

“They’re helping us grow in other ways, too. The senior consultants in our company are able to tap into new knowledge with these young employees, making us aware of emerging trends and technologies that are important to stay on top of. “

Barrington got to know these new employees while they were still in school, by bringing them on for paid work terms. They showed what well-educated and highly-motivated young talent can do.

“Young people today are very entrepreneurial in nature, and their initiative and drive is a tremendous benefit to smaller companies like ours that make room for this talent to shine. We hire a new grad every year, but the Graduate to Opportunity program has given us the capacity to hire more than one.”

Graduate to Opportunity (GTO) provides a two-year salary incentive to small businesses, start-ups, social enterprises and non-profits who hire a recent grad within 12 months of their graduation.

Employers like Barrington Consulting can receive 25% of the Year 1 salary (35% if the grad is a member of a designated diversity group) and 12.5% of Year 2 salary from the provincial government.

“Retaining young talent that is grown here helps local businesses to be more innovative, because they are leveraging the knowledge of individuals who have been newly trained,” says Nadia. “GTO not only helps new graduates get jobs in their field, it benefits the organizations who hire. They are getting fresh insight from fresh eyes when they hire someone so young.”

All three of the new grads have applied their advanced knowledge and supported business analysis projects here at home, and as far afield as Edmonton and Texas.

“One of our new grads reached into their own network and made us a client connection in Newfoundland that promised us a project in another jurisdiction,” explains Nadia. “In this case the new grad had a direct impact on our revenue.”

That grad was Conan MacGregor, Consultant Dalhousie Industrial Engineering grad.

“As recent grads at the company we have such dynamic roles,” he explains. “The flexibility and wide variety of work is a great fit for grads like us who are eager to test all of our skills.”

“Young people like me choose to stay with companies that invest in our potential,” says Lauren Murray, a recent Dalhousie MBA student. “Recent grads are extremely loyal to employers if you set them up for growth and success.”

Perhaps more Halifax employers are seeing the business results tied to hiring young employees. The Halifax Partnership’s Business Confidence Survey conducted in March found that roughly 4/10 businesses had no reservations about hiring entry-level employees, an increase from 3/10 last year.

Since GTO program inception in 2014, more than 900 grads have secured permanent, full-time jobs with employers like Barrington Consulting, across Nova Scotia.

If you are interested in learning more about the available funding to hire talented grads, take a look at the GTO program at: https://novascotia.ca/programs/graduate-to-opportunity/

< Back to Articles | Topics: Skilled workforce

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