Graduate vacancies rise


Graduate vacancies rise
The number of graduate vacancies within top UK firms has risen by 16.7 per cent over the last year, according to new research.

University leavers now stand the best chance of landing a job with a leading company than they have done in a decade, the Association of Graduate Recruiters claimed.

A survey of 235 of the association's 680 members also found that most employers felt that the calibre of new graduates had been maintained this year, while a quarter said that they thought there had been an improvement in the quality of fresh recruits to the employment market.

Employers said that computer literacy was the skill most in evidence amongst new graduates.

But businesses were critical of the lack of project management skills demonstrated by university leavers, who were also alleged to be lacking in enterprise, leadership and commercial awareness skills.

The average starting salary offered by the association's members, who include leading recruiters from both the public and private sectors, was £23,136.

Chief executive of the Association of Graduate Recruiters, Carl Gilleard said the research showed that employers recognised the value of recruiting university leavers.

But pointing to a drop in the number of applicants pursuing each vacancy, he warned that businesses would need to maintain a competitive approach to recruitment in order to attract graduates.

Employers said that they had received an average of 28 applications per graduate vacancy this year, down from 33 last year.

"A new generation of students with different needs and wants may require a different approach to recruitment," Mr Gilleard said.

"Perhaps this slight fall in the number of applications per vacancy may be a warning to recruiters that they need to remain competitive," he added.

Related categories: Management / Business, Education / Training / Teaching.

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