Young people need to be willing to start at the bottom to get a foot in the employment door.
Young people need to be willing to start at the bottom to get a foot in the employment door. Chris Ison

Young workers need to be prepared to start at the bottom

ONE in four young Australians believes there won't be sufficient employment and training opportunities in their local community when they finish school.

Only half believe they will find work in their chosen field without having to relocate, and males are almost three times more likely than females to not complete secondary school.

It's something of a bleak picture, one that's built on the findings of Mission Australia's 2013 Youth Survey, the organisation's 12th national survey of almost 15,000 young people aged 15-19.

The 2013 survey included a particular focus on young people's views about employment.

Mission Australia chief executive Toby Hall said the concerns raised by young people demonstrated the need to do more to assist Australian youth in the transition from school to the workforce or higher education.

"The high level of concern among Australian youth about the economy, job availability and employment opportunities underscores the need for significant policy reform," Mr Hall said.

"Youth unemployment across the country is now three times greater than the average unemployment rate, and in some particularly disadvantaged areas it's approaching 40%.

"We know that youth unemployment is the 'canary in the coal mine' for Australia's future well-being and productivity."

Mr Hall said contractions in the job market and general economic uncertainty put casual, entry-level jobs - those typically filled by young people - at huge risk.

"This year's survey results show that our next generation of workers is all too aware of this rapidly growing problem, and very few young people believe they will be immune to the consequences when they finish their secondary or tertiary education."

You need to be prepared to start at the absolute bottom, work the worst hours, earn minimum wage and work jobs that you don't really enjoy. That too is reality.

Invest in yourself through training and education, accept that a bit of discomfort will help you grow professionally, and remember that all the skill and talent in the world is not a replacement for good, old-fashioned hard work.