Employers will have to pay new graduates higher starting salaries than ever
before to attract the top performers.
According to the annual UK Graduate Careers Survey, average expected
starting salaries are up 6.5 per cent on 2000 levels, with students expecting
to earn an average of £20,800 for their first job and the top 20 per cent of
graduate job hunters anticipating initial packages of at least £25,000.
Over half of the finalists surveyed also expect employers to give a golden
hello or lump sum of up to £3,000 when they start work.
Survey director Martin Birchall said, "Graduates this summer are the
most ambitious and demanding of their generation. Despite making fewer job
applications most are confident of getting their first choice job and expect
record salary packages when they begin work.
"This has made the 2000-2001 recruitment round one of the toughest for
One in six of the students surveyed said they want to work in consulting,
marketing and the media, while only 2 per cent would choose actuarial work,
logistics and property.
London is the most popular location for 38 per cent of graduates and is the
first choice for students at 24 out of the 30 universities surveyed.
The least sought after locations are Northern Ireland, Wales, East Anglia,
Ireland and the North East.
Students are applying to fewer graduate employers, making an average of just
five or six applications each – less than half the average number of
applications made by finalists five years ago.
The survey was conducted by student and graduate market research company
High Fliers Research and was based on interviews with 14,115 students.
By Katie Hawkins