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Asia Graduate Recruitment Season is Kicking off

Posted by Daniel Purchas

As some of you may already know, we are now quite active in running campaigns for employers in the Asia region as a whole over the past few years. While many grad recruiters in Australia are finished with grad offers for the year so far and some are wrapping up internship program intakes at the moment, Asia is just starting to heat up now

Graduate & Intern Recruitment in Asia

The Asia Graduate and Intern recruitment cycle is slightly different to how things work in Australia. Many employers usually start the recruitment of their graduates and interns around September/ October simultaneously and close graduate applications after 1 – 2 months but internship application windows can stay open for up to 3 months.

Many of the large Graduate employers in Asia are often regional graduate program managers as well so are often scheduling campaigns across multiple countries simultaneously or a rolling approach e.g. Start applications in Malaysia in early August, Singapore late August and Hong Kong in early to mid September which also depends on the start of the academic year in each country as well.

The Growing Trend in returnee student recruitment

One of the biggest trends in the Asia student recruitment market has been the growth in targeting Asian nationals who are studying abroad, predominantly in the USA, UK and also increasingly in Australia.

The feedback we have received from employers in Asia when recruiting graduates and interns who are returning to Asia after studying abroad will generally fall into one of 2 camps:

  • They want to target Asian nationals who are educated overseas at elite and globally renowned universities
  • They want to recruit Asian nationals back to their home countries who have more exposure to Western culture

With many large Asian employers of graduates and interns these days being Multinational Corporations (MNC’s), the cultural experience of a Western educated graduate can help them integrate into their new employer and then also work with new colleagues that may end up being in a different country at the end of the day.

How we’re getting involved in Returnee student recruitment in Asia

GradConnection as a student recruitment platform is now setup to help organisations recruit the students they need from the main markets where they are currently studying.

Asia Graduate Reruitment

We’re currently working with employers in the Asia market to help them recruit Asian nationals studying in Australia from China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines.

We get a large proportion of the Australian university student market visiting our site every year and with around one third of Australian university students being an international student, we do have a large number of Asian citizens on our database to push these roles out to.

With the proportion of international students being so high, we are now also starting to work with a number of Universities to promote targeted opportunities based on a combination of degree major and the students home Nationality. We aim to increase the employment opportunities for these international students as well as providing more metrics on the employment options provided to these students for the university careers services as well.

Where else in the world is this trend going to appear and grow?

The 2 other major graduate returnee recruitment markets are the Middle East and a wide range of African companies. 

In the Middle East, many students study abroad and especially in the GCC countries, (Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates), there are now citizenship based hiring quotas to make sure enough of their local citizens are employed by each company operating in these countries.

African companies have also started looking to recruit their citizens who have studied overseas to return home after graduation.

Unlike in Australian where the majority of international students are from Asia, many Middle Eastern and African students will be studying in the UK & USA.

With Asia, Africa and the Middle East being high growth areas in the global economy, we are predicting that international student returnee recruitment is only going to grow heavily over the next few years.


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