Graduate unemployment rate lowest since 1989


According to the latest ‘What Do Graduates Do?' survey (published by Prospects in collaboration with the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services), graduate unemployment has fallen to 5.3% from 5.7%.  The employment rate for graduates also fell, from 76% to 74%.

The report analyses the destinations of last year’s graduates, six months after leaving university.

“What do graduates do?” also shows that while there were large rises in graduates entering nursing, marketing, finance and IT, there were significant falls in the number of graduates working in medicine, teaching and engineering, reflecting the decreasing number of students studying those subjects. Despite many industries such as these having a shortage of workers, this did not translate into higher graduate starting salaries, which remained flat at an average of around £21,000. 

According to Charlie Ball, Head of Higher Education Intelligence at Prospects, “The graduate labour market has held up well despite the economic and political shocks of 2016. Employers continue to recruit and need skilled workers, but some graduates are not behaving as they usually do in this kind of climate, they’re turning to further study. This may be partly attributed to the new postgraduate loans system, but some graduates could also view further study as a safe haven, away from their fears of a Brexit downturn, which has yet to materialise. As a consequence, we have fewer graduates entering the jobs market than in the last two years, just when the labour market is robust and skills shortages are more serious than ever.”

And AGCAS President Shelagh Green said: “Along with Higher Education Careers Services, the annual What do graduates do? data is a valuable source of information for current students as they plan for their futures. The constantly changing nature of the graduate labour market and the global economy makes it essential for today’s students to embrace the opportunities and support available.”

“What do graduates do?” 2017 can be accessed online at

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

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Graduate unemployment rate lowest since 1989
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