At this time every year, the High Fliers Report is published, a major report providing reflection, prediction and overall insight into the graduate job market. In this post, we’re bringing you the headline statistics and findings from this report, published just today (18th January):

The headline: Biggest ever graduate intakes in 2016

The statistic: Employers plan to expand their graduate recruitment by a further 7.5% in 2016, taking the number of graduate jobs available to the highest ever level

What does this mean for you?

Firstly, the value that graduates add to businesses is clearly being recognised, with more and more companies planning to increase their graduate intakes in 2016. But with the number of vacancies expected to reach a record high, graduates can be pickier. Competing for the best talent is going to get tougher so attention needs to be paid to attraction strategies, your employer brand and engagement. The good news is, graduates are seeing past the bright lights of London and looking to smaller urban areas to live and work. So it is a focus on your company, your graduate offering and your engagement with candidates that is top of the priority list this year.


The headline: Thousands of unfilled vacancies in 2015

The statistic: Over 1000 graduate vacancies were left unfilled last year, reducing the graduate intake at more than a third of the UK’s leading employers

What does this mean for you?

Given the first headline statistic, this one is even more concerning for graduate employers. If graduate vacancies increase this year, we could well be in an even more precarious position with regards to unfilled vacancies next year. With record numbers og graduate job vacancies, graduates now have the flexibility of changing their minds about offers of employment.

Eager to ensure they accept the perfect opportunity after investing a great deal in their studies, it is likely that today’s graduates will have a number of opportunities lined up, which they can pick and choose from when the time comes. Again, the need for a clear, strong engagement strategy is more apparent than ever.  It may be at this point that external support is required. We have supported a number of larger companies to fill those last few, ‘hard-to-fill’ vacancies, offering a fresh approach to securing strong talent.


The headline: Increasing popularity of Work Placements

The statistic: More than 90% of the UK’s leading graduate firms are offering paid work experience programmes for students and recent graduates during the 2015-16 academic year

What does this mean for you?

‘Engagement’ has been mentioned a few times already and offering work placements is one way to engage graduates early on.

Imagine having a pool of candidates, who have already earned your trust and respect through their placements, to form your graduate intake? Now you are in the ‘pick and choose’ seat! Admittedly not all of them may be suitable, but if you could secure just 30% of your next graduate intake (of say 10 graduates) through offering roles to previous placement students, a third of your work would be done.

An unprecedented 14,409 paid work placements are available this academic year and recruiters expect a third of this year’s full-time graduate positions to be filled by graduates who have already worked for their organisations.

If you are not offering placement opportunities, your competitors may well be, and the statistics predict that placement schemes will go some way to appeasing the challenges of a competitive marketplace this year.

I hope these insights give you an awareness of what is happening in the Graduate Market this year and how it could affect your plans. It is important to remember that these statistics are based on the UK’s leading graduate employers, but there is still so much we can learn from the report and apply to companies, large or small, across the globe.


Source: http://highfliers.co.uk/download/2016/graduate_market/GMRelease16.pdf