Salary No Longer Priority in Graduates’ Job Search

According to a recent poll of more than a thousand students, a large salary is no longer the priority for graduates looking for their first job.

Students were asked to rank the most important considerations
when choosing a future employer; only 11% of respondents said the size of the wage packet on offer would be the deciding factor.

In fact, salary and benefits only came in fifth place overall, despite being in top position in the same survey last year, alongside access to training and development opportunities; which topped the survey in 2015.

Money clearly isn’t ruling graduates’ searches as the drop in importance shows; with the graduate job market recovering, the class of 2015 are making longer term decisions about what their first job will bring to their career prospects, rather than focusing on the quick win.

However, what qualifies as good training and development opportunities is becoming debatable, though ‘on-the-job experience’ and ‘learning within dynamic team’ seems to be a winner.

Graduates are also found to be placing greater value on their work environment and the relationships in it. ‘People and culture’ and ‘having a good job with a good work-life balance’ both rose up the survey rankings from last year – with 21% and 13% of respondents citing these as the most important factors.

Graduates are looking more for job satisfaction at inspiring and progressive workplaces, with initiatives such as flexible working being seen as ‘business as normal’ and something to be expected rather than a perk.

The survey also asked students about where they look for their first job – London proved to be the most popular destination – with 45% stating they were hoping to start their career there. The next popular option was overseas with 7% looking outside of the UK for their first role.


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