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The Graduate Market in 2011

C h a n g e s i n G r a d u a t e V a c a n c i e s d u r i n g t h e R e c e s s i o n B e t w e e n 2 0 0 7 a n d 2 0 0 9 , v a c a n c i e s a t o r g a n i s a t i o n s f e a t u r e d i n T h e T i m e s T o p 1 0 0 G r a d u a t e E m p l o y e r s f e l l b y a n u n p r e c e d e n t e d 2 3 . 3 % a n d t h e n u m b e r o f e n t r y - l e v e l p o s i t i o n s r e d u c e d i n t h i r t e e n o f f o u r t e e n k e y i n d u s t r i e s a n d b u s i n e s s s e c t o r s . I n a l l , s o m e f i f t y - n i n e e m p l o y e r s s a w t h e i r g r a d u a t e r e c r u i t m e n t d e c l i n e d u r i n g t h e r e c e s s i o n . T h e m o s t s u b s t a n t i a l c u t s t o o k p l a c e a t t h e i n v e s t m e n t b a n k s , I T & t e l e c o m s f i r m s , c h e m i c a l & p h a r m a c e u t i c a l s c o m p a n i e s a n d w i t h i n t h e m e d i a , w h e r e v a c a n c i e s h a l v e d d u r i n g t h e c o u r s e o f t h e t w o r e c r u i t m e n t r o u n d s . T h e r e w e r e s h a r p f a l l s t o o i n r e c r u i t m e n t a t c o n s u m e r g o o d s m a n u f a c t u r e r s , e n g i n e e r i n g & i n d u s t r i a l e m p l o y e r s , o i l & e n e r g y c o m p a n i e s a n d a c c o u n t i n g & p r o f e s s i o n a l s e r v i c e s f i r m s v a c a n c i e s d r o p p e d b y b e t w e e n a q u a r t e r a n d a t h i r d i n e a c h s e c t o r b e t w e e n 2 0 0 7 a n d 2 0 0 9 .

J u s t o n e e m p l o y m e n t a r e a t h e p u b l i c s e c t o r m a n a g e d t o i n c r e a s e i t s g r a d u a t e r e c r u i t m e n t o v e r t h e p e r i o d , i n c r e a s i n g v a c a n c i e s b y 4 4 . 9 % f r o m 1 , 4 7 5 p l a c e s i n 2 0 0 7 , t o a n i m p r e s s i v e 2 , 1 3 7 p o s t s b y t h e e n d o f 2 0 0 9 . T h i s g r o w t h w a s p a r t l y d o w n t o t h e c o n s i d e r a b l e e x p a n s i o n o f t h e T e a c h F i r s t s c h e m e , a s w e l l a s s i g n i f i c a n t i n c r e a s e s i n r e c r u i t m e n t a t t h e N H S , t h e C i v i l S e r v i c e F a s t S t r e a m a n d t h e G o v e r n m e n t C o m m u n i c a t i o n s H e a d q u a r t e r s ( G C H Q ) . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t o b e n c h m a r k h o w g r a d u a t e v a c a n c i e s h a v e c h a n g e d o v e r t h e l a s t e i g h t y e a r s s i n c e t h e e n d o f t h e l a s t e c o n o m i c d o w n t u r n i n 2 0 0 2 ( s e e C h a r t 2 . 1 0 ) . T h i s i n d e x i n g o f v a c a n c i e s s h o w s t h a t d u r i n g t h e f o u r g r a d u a t e r e c r u i t m e n t s e a s o n s b e t w e e n 2 0 0 4 a n d 2 0 0 7 , o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r g r a d u a t e s g r e w b y m o r e t h a n a t h i r d a t B r i t a i n s t o p e m p l o y e r s . V i r t u a l l y a l l o f t h i s g r o w t h w a s w i p e d o u t i n t h e f o l l o w i n g t w o y e a r s , a n d b y 2 0 0 9 g r a d u a t e r e c r u i t m e n t h a d r e t u r n e d t o a s i m i l a r l e v e l t o t h a t r e c o r d e d i n 2 0 0 4 .

Despite the increase in graduate positions in 2010 and the higher vacancy targets for 2011, recruitment of university-leavers has yet to return to the pre-recession intake seen in 2007.

Chart 2.10 Indexing Graduate Vacancies at the UK’s Top Employers 2003 to 2011

150

Graduate vacancies, indexed to recruitment in 2003

100

50

100

101

111

123

136

127

104

117

128

0

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

Source - The Graduate Market in 2011

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