The number of Graduate vacancies available within UK companies has risen during 2014 by 11.6%, bringing recruitment to the same level as 2007’s pre-recession peak.
Figures suggest that a third of graduate employers have increased their recruitment in the last six months, contributing to the biggest increase in graduate vacancies for four years. Another third of employers stated that they will increase their recruitment further in the second half of the year.
The findings have shown that graduate recruitment has increased in 11 out of 13 sectors with the biggest increase seen within the accounting and finance, public and engineering and industrial sectors. Employees in these sectors said they will take on 1,300 more graduates in 2014.
Employers said they had received more than 8,600 applications each this year, which equates to 39 candidates per role. However, competition is tougher for roles in consumer goods manufacturing, oil and energy, media, banking and finance and high street retail where employers receive at least 50 applications per graduate vacancy. This high number of applications to each vacancy has caused several recruiters to close their applications earlier than they had planned.
It has also been found that the median graduate starting salaries has increased to £26,500 – the first recorded rise for four years.
Office for National Statistics figures also suggest that graduate numbers have increased by 85,000 in 2007 to 365,000 in 2014 meaning that there will be a significant increase in the number of graduate level jobs to place the higher number of graduates looking for work.