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Jobseekers believe they need better vocational qualifications to find employment

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Jobseekers are finding it hard to stand out in a competitive market, with a third believing a lack of qualifications is holding them back, according to research by Home Learning College and Reed.

The survey also provided evidence higher education is no guarantee of success, with 21% of jobseekers claiming their degree has not benefited their career. This explains why 54% plan to enhance their employment prospects through further study.

The research showed that the economic climate is creating a mixed bag of emotions for candidates. Although 62% are confident they will get the job they want in the next six months, 28% admit to being frustrated with their current situation.

Dave Snow, academic director at Home Learning College, said: "The volume of applications for each vacancy means that employers are paying greater attention to candidates’ educational history. Ambitious jobseekers are recognising that targeted vocational qualifications can add real value to their CV, helping to underpin and expand existing skills and experience."

Andy Wilson, head of learning and partnerships at Reed added: "We are seeing confidence slowly creep back into the jobs market, but for many jobseekers the situation remains challenging. By equipping our audience with access to learning opportunities, we're giving them the chance to stand out from the competition and gain a real advantage in achieving their career goals."

The survey was conducted among over 4,000 active Reed jobseekers. Of these, 48% are currently in employment.