4 Emerging Graduate Recruitment Trends

Posted by Kate Smedley on 13 Feb 2017

Staying ahead of trends in graduate recruitment is vital to ensure your business is equipped to source and hire the best talent. Be aware of these four emerging developments that may affect your graduate recruitment success this year:-

University applications have fallen 

University applications this year have reportedly fallen by 5%, with the fall in EU students contributing to this decline as a result of Brexit. UCAS (The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) revealed a 5% fall in UK and 7% in EU applications. A further concern for the healthcare sector is the 23% drop in nursing applications reported by The Royal College of Nursing, which it believes is a direct result of the removal of bursaries.

Graduates review the gig economy as a positive move

Over half of graduates (54%) see the gig economy as a positive change in the workforce, according to new research but do not regard it as a long-term option for their career. The lack of available work and benefits such as annual or sick leave are cited as deterrents. Tech graduates may, however, find the gig economy to be a more lucrative option for them in the short-term. Over half of employers were unable to fill their graduate jobs in 2016 so tapping into this additional skill source to address short-term needs will become increasingly important.

Employers are rebranding graduate schemes to apprenticeships

A recent survey found that over half of employers – particularly in engineering, financial services, accountancy and law - are planning to change their graduate schemes to apprenticeships in response to the apprenticeship levy which comes into force in April. The Association of Graduate Recruiters found that apprenticeships rose by 24% in 2016, while graduate vacancies increased by just 2%. The longstanding concern over apprenticeships is their failure to attract the age groups they are targeted at. The number of people under 25 enrolling on apprenticeships rose by only 4% between 2010-2014. HR must begin to analyse recruitment data to ensure their business is focusing on the most successful source of hire.

Know your audience (and their drinking habits)

An article in HR Magazine focused on the importance of understanding your graduate recruitment audience, even down to their drinking habits and aversion to red wine. Again, recruitment analytics will give you greater insight into the source of your most successful hires and the point at which they enter your recruitment funnel.

To improve graduate hiring strategies, UK employers should learn the lessons of 2016 below:-

Incorporate gamification : Technology, incorporating gamification during initial screening will engage the attention of talent in your graduate pipeline.

Cut your time to hire now : Your time to hire is a key factor in your ability to hire graduates. Time taken for assessments should be measured in days, not weeks. Support your strategy with recruitment software which will reduce your hiring time.

Adapt to AI : There’s no avoiding AI yet nearly half of UK businesses are failing to prepare for the impact it will have on their businesses. It is also changing graduate recruitment requirements as growing numbers of entry level jobs are automated.

Pay for talent : Graduate pay increased by 3.3% last year, with average starting salaries of around £30,000. 1,000 graduate jobs were turned down at the last minute.

Your local trends impact your recruitment success : One quarter of all new graduates secure employment in London. An awareness of how regional trends impact your graduate recruitment success will enable HR to adjust its overall strategy.  

Train for soft skills : Employers must tackle the soft skills gap by overcoming what is regarded as a lack of basic employability skills of some graduates.

Expand your talent pool : The use of anonymised CVs to remove bias towards wealthier candidates often seen in sectors such banking and finance is the only way to minimise bias and ensure your business attracts the best graduate talent.

Understand how graduate recruitment trends are affecting your business. Invest in recruitment software to help you hire better people faster. Contact Advorto today.

You might also like to read:-

Graduate Recruitment : Your Questions Answered

The Demise Of Graduate Recruitment : Here’s Why It’s A Myth 

Topics: graduate recruitment

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