Graduate Jobs at Ten Year High

The recession has been tough on job seekers, but it’s been a particularly bumpy ride for 16 – 24 year olds. However, according to High Fliers’ annual study of the UK’s top 100 employers, there certainly appears to be light at the end of the tunnel. Our team of professional CV writers and interview coaches has put together a list of key takeaways from the report:

Upward and onward

Graduate vacancies are expected to rise for the third year in a row. 2014 saw an increase of 7.9% over the previous year, and 2015 is expected to see numbers expand by 8.1%. This means the number of opportunities available this year will be the highest in a decade.

Growth areas

Which sectors are expected to be growth engines? Accounting, professional services, banking, finance, retail, public sector and the armed forces.

Keeping it in the family

Recruiters also confirm that over a third of entry level roles are likely to be filled by graduates that have an existing track record with firms through a placement or internship. More employers also now have more work experience opportunities for first year undergraduates.

Let’s talk money

Over 25% of leading graduate programmes are expected to pay more than £35,000 and as usual investment banks lead with the most lucrative packages. The majority of work experience, internships and industrial placements at top graduate employers are also currently paid.


Graduate recruiters have been increasingly using social media, careers fairs, recruitment presentations, skills training events and campus brand managers to market their programmes.


An interesting trend is that top graduate employers are receiving more completed job applications early on in the recruitment cycle, and they also confirm that the calibre of applicants has improved. In addition to which firms have received 6% more applications over the 2013 – 2014 period.


This leads nicely on from the previous key takeaway, almost half of recruiters from the survey clarify that graduates who have no work experience have little prospect of receiving an offer on one of their programmes.


It’s definitely good news and a positive start to the New Year. At the same time the message is loud and clear: competition for positions and the calibre of candidates are on the rise. This means the importance of securing placements, work experience and internships is more important than ever.

If you would like some support to stand out in this competitive marketplace, as well as to arm yourself with the correct advice and preparation to achieve winning results, call us on +44 20 7100 6656 or email enquiries@citycv.com.

City CV Managing Director Victoria McLean is a former recruitment manager for two leading, global investment banks and is a multiple resume industry award winner, including first prize for 2013 ‘Best New Graduate CV’. She leads a team of interview coaches and professional CV writers, who provide a bespoke 1-2-1 service, drawing on their in-depth hiring industry experience, across sectors and levels, right from graduates to board level executives.

You can read the full report here: The Graduate Market in 2015 High Fliers Report

Image Source: By Carine06 from UK (A face in the crowdUploaded by russavia) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons