Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Recruitment trends: Graduates

As totaljobs continues to command a greater share of the online recruitment market, our site attracts more candidates, in more areas and more industries than ever before. This allows us greater visibility of industry trends across the UK, which we will continue to share in a series of blogs, reports and whitepapers

Firstly, when comparing the first half of 2017 with the same period in 2016, we can see a 7% increase in job advertising. With unemployment at the lowest rate since the 70s, you could be forgiven for thinking that we’d therefore see a dip in applications, but driven by our investment in technology, we are seeing an above average increase in applications – up 30% YOY – demonstrating that the talent is out there and active despite high employment levels.

From January to June 2017, over 50% more hospitality roles were advertised on totaljobs YOY, prompting nearly 400,000 more applications across roles in the industry. Similar effects are seen in Retail, which despite a 9% reduction in jobs advertised, has witnessed a 26% YOY increase in applications, to the tune of half a million more applications.

Meanwhile, Accountancy and Banking saw a considerable drop in available positions, with 20,000 fewer vacancies across those industries. In spite of this, the number of applications rose by nearly 100,000, showing that a large availability of candidates in these skilled industries.

Focus on: The Graduate Market

With over 150,000 brand new applicants using totaljobs every month, we have witnessed an influx of fresh graduates onto our site. So much so, that “Graduate” has been searched over 300,000 times on totaljobs in the first half of the year alone. This has made “Graduate” the 15th most searched term on the website, and to put this into context, it is over 60,000 more searches than the same period in 2016, and is more prominent than searches for “sales”, “construction”, “manager” and “finance” – some of the key sectors and job types advertised on our site.

Throughout H1 2017, a whopping 4,000 graduates have signed up to use totaljobs every month, with a further 23,000 using our site throughout the month. In spite of this, 2,000 fewer Graduate jobs were advertised on totaljobs in the first half of 2017, compared to the first half of 2016.

This begs the question: are graduate jobs being affected by the recent introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy? Could recruiters be changing their approach to entry level talent based on the fact that the number of people applying for a university place dropped for the first time since 2012?

Whatever the cause, totaljobs recorded 200,000 more Graduate applications YOY, showing that the supply of skilled graduate talent remains strong, despite a drop in available positions.

Graduate trends

Unsurprisingly most graduates have selected London as a desired work location, with over 5,000 active graduates seeking to work in the capital every month.

So while the Northern Powerhouses of Manchester and Liverpool look to tempt new talent away from the south, they are still in the capital’s stead. This being said, the next most popular locations for Graduates are the North West (2,700) and the West Midlands (2,000).

When looking at where Graduates are applying, we can still see that 40% of Graduate applications are in the capital, with over 3x more than the North West.

The mean salary of Graduates on our database is just under £21,000, with the median as high as £30,000.  But as they begin their career post-study, which roles are attracting them?

Within the graduate market, the most prominent searches have been for Graduate Engineering positions, with over 42,000 searches in H1 signalling a 34% YOY increase.

The other key searches have been for Graduate roles within:

  • Analytics – 16,000
  • Marketing – 11,000
  • Accountancy – 11,000
  • Law – 8,000
  • Finance – 8,000

All in all, as the summer draws to a close, the graduate market is ripe with a surplus of skilled candidates using totaljobs to find their first step into a range of careers across all corners of the UK.

To find out more about the Graduate audience of totaljobs, download our Graduate Factsheet here.