Student Graduate jobs more competitive this year
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Students Graduating This Year Face Tougher Competition For Jobs

Ella Kipling January 11, 2022

According to the Institute of Student Employers (ISE), students graduating this year are likely to face more competition for jobs. This is because the number of available positions falls short of pre-pandemic levels, and because this year’s graduates are forced to compete with the unemployed 2020 graduates who have struggled to find jobs due to the pandemic.

Stephen Isherwood, the ISE’s chief executive said: “There are more people looking for the security of a graduate programme, and this year’s cohort is competing with unemployed graduates from last year and those who did a masters degree.

He went on to explain that “despite employers wanting more young people than last year, there just aren’t enough roles and we’re not yet back to 2019 levels.”

Not bouncing back

The report stated that recruitment had still failed to bounce back from the trough it endured due to the lockdown in 2020. Mr Isherwood said this highlights “the genuine struggle for young people to find work during the pandemic.”

However, while competition may be fierce, Mr Isherwood thinks things should get easier over the next year, assuming that the economy continues to recover.

The ISE Recruitment Survey ran during September 2021 and collected 177 responses from companies representing the UK’s largest employers of school leavers and graduates. The companies received an average of 91 applications per graduate vacancy, which is a 17% increase on last year, and the highest figure since the ISE began collecting this data in 1991.

But what is the ISE? Formerly known as the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR), the ISE is an independent not-for-profit member organisation that was established in 1968. It is the UK’s leading independent voice for student employers, and according to their website, ISE’s vision is that every businesses success is “maximised by full access to student talent.”

See also: How students really feel about vaccinations

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Ella Kipling is an Entertainment and News Writer at GRV Media. She regularly writes a mixture of news and features for HITC and has been part of the team since 2020. After graduating from the University of Birmingham with a BA (Hons) in English Literature, Ella is currently studying for an MA in Magazine Journalism at City University. She has a keen interest in current affairs and can usually be found reading the news, with her nose in a book (and updating her Goodreads), talking about women’s rights, or listening to Showtunes.