Overhyping of graduate opportunities by employers is causing high turnover
among graduate recruits, according to the Institute of Employment Studies.
As the number of graduates rises and employers grow keener for staff with
degrees, companies are recruiting indiscriminately without setting firm career
development plans, the IES claims.
As a result, graduates are moving into "average" rather than
"élite" jobs, becoming disillusioned and leaving, said Nick Jagger,
one of the authors of Grad- uate Review 2000.
"Increasingly graduates are a large proportion of the fresh intake; 30
per cent of 18 year olds now go to university," he said.
"There is no longer a particular type of graduate and no typical
graduate job. Employers need to be clearer about what they are looking for and
differentiate more between jobs."
Carl Gilleard, chief executive of the Association of Graduate Recruiters,
said its research showed that graduates want to be told the truth "warts
"There is always a temptation to exaggerate how good it is to work in
this organisation, but graduates want a realistic understanding of what is
He said the growth in company web sites is helping, as it allows candidates
to do more research before deciding on a job.
"There is a temptation to go for the best graduates, but you could end
up with a frustrated hopeful waiting for dead men’s shoes," said Carmel
Maguire, HR director at the British Library.
Ralph Tribe, HR director at Getty Images, said graduates have to learn that
their graduate status no longer guarantees them fast-track opportunities.
"They have to be proactive. The people who get the best jobs are the
ones who make their own opportunities," he said.
Toyota said it has always been honest with graduates. "We are a flat
structure and do not have many managers so they will not be on a fast track to
management," said Helen Baker, senior HR specialist at Toyota.
• For copies of the report, costing £27.50, call 01273 686751.
By Dominique Hammond