Competencies preferred by employers of interior design graduates in Kenya
The changing nature of today's workplace has created new challenges for interior design professionals relating to the employability of recent interior design graduates. Frogner (2002, pg. 18). The pervasive influence of technology has significantly influenced the business and economic climate forcing business to change its very culture. Observing the incessant changes in the society, (Seligson, 2000) compares the categorizing of curriculum and careers to a snapshot from a moving picture. A need for graduates that are technically competent, with a broad range of skills for employability has become imminent, Frogner (2002, pg. 18). The task of identifying the priority skills identified as competencies sought by employers for employability of interior design graduates was the focus of this study. The key research question was "What are the preferred key skills identified as competencies that employers seek when employing new interior design graduates?"). A random sample of 70 interior design practitioners practicing in Kenya, majorly Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu, was selected. Data collection involved use of focus group discussions and questionnaires developed for the study. Data analysis consisted of using a two-sided t-test for significance set at 0.05 levels to identify competencies deemed important by the responding interior design practitioners. Any variable having mean of 3.00 or higher Indicated that the respondents considered the variable important in the four categories of competencies, as identified in the instrument. Preliminary discussions with interior design employers and graduates indicated a pivotal cause for concern, regarding competencies of interior design graduates pertinent to their employability. There are consequences faced when graduates Lack competencies sought by employers. Frogner (2002 pg. 18). In Kenya, There is no study to date know to the researcher, which documents the employers’ preferred competencies in interior design graduates, thus the need and the inspiration for this research. Findings will benefit the industry and prospective employees.