About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2078-2087
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-617-5895-1
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2016.1470

Conference name: 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 14-16 November, 2016
Location: Seville, Spain

GENERIC SKILLS REQUIREMENTS: THE NON-SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMPANY

A. Fitó, M.J. Martínez-Argüelles

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (SPAIN)
Even more studies are showing that transversal or generic competencies are the key to success in the recruitment process (Tymon, 2013; Branine, 2008). One of the pillars of the adaptation process to the EHEA is the commitment for professionalizing university training with the aim to facilitate the graduates’ employability. In the context of the different degrees or masters, this reform implies the training and certification that students have not only reached a certain specific skills of the specific degree, but also certain generic ones. Therefore, those responsible for the degrees and the teachers too have the responsibility to train students in order that they attain the generic competences in accordance with labour market demand.

With this purpose, in this study we analyse, firstly, which are the most demanded generic skills by the labour market for graduates in Business Administration and Management (ADE) are and, secondly, if the businesses’ characteristics determine the graduate’s profile sought in relation to soft skills.

To answer these research questions, first, a questionnaire has been designed. The selection of generic competences that make up the questionnaire has been made departing from those included in the Project Tuning and White Book of the Degree in Economics and Business (ANECA, 2005). Secondly, in-depth interviews were made to four general directors of companies responsible for the selection of employees belonging to area of ADE. Their comments and suggestions have allowed us to modify and complete the picture of initial competences until getting a final list of 20 generic competences.

Later on this questionnaire has been sent online to a group of companies associated with the Catalan Association of Accounting and Management (ACCID). This association comprehends entrepreneurs of the whole Catalan business sector and is representative for different sized companies and activity sector. 242 responses were received, of which 212 were considered valid.

The responses of employers showed, firstly, that when hiring a graduate in Business Administration, they considered relevant that they have attained the generic competences. Of the 20 competencies, the interviewed entrepreneurs considered the following as the most important: The ability to work in teams, the ability to organize and plan the work properly, an ethically and socially responsible attitude, and to be solution oriented.

Additionally we have examined whether the company's own characteristics as their age, size, sector in which it operates, level of ICT use, exports, training of their workers and innovation influence or not significantly the importance attached to these competences. The conclusion obtained suggests that except for the greater relative importance attributed to the ability to work in an international framework of the exporting firms and the ability to manage the time in the case of the start-ups, the rest of variables do not influence significantly the results.

In short, generic skills are really important for the businesses’ network, regardless of the characteristics of each company. So training students in these competences is essential to facilitate access to the labour market, independently of the type of companies to which they wish to access.
@InProceedings{FITO2016GEN,
author = {Fit{\'{o}}, A. and Mart{\'{i}}nez-Arg{\"{u}}elles, M.J.},
title = {GENERIC SKILLS REQUIREMENTS: THE NON-SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMPANY},
series = {9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2016 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-5895-1},
issn = {2340-1095},
doi = {10.21125/iceri.2016.1470},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/iceri.2016.1470},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {14-16 November, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {2078-2087}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Fitó AU - M.J. Martínez-Argüelles
TI - GENERIC SKILLS REQUIREMENTS: THE NON-SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMPANY
SN - 978-84-617-5895-1/2340-1095
DO - 10.21125/iceri.2016.1470
PY - 2016
Y1 - 14-16 November, 2016
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 9th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2016 Proceedings
SP - 2078
EP - 2087
ER -
A. Fitó, M.J. Martínez-Argüelles (2016) GENERIC SKILLS REQUIREMENTS: THE NON-SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMPANY, ICERI2016 Proceedings, pp. 2078-2087.
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