Big banks, professional services firms and household names like IBM and Coles dominate the dreams of today’s grads.
That’s the word from research released by the AFR, in association with graduate employment website GradConnection, which has compiled a list of most popular employers for new graduates in 2015.
The GradConnection list is based on the job preferences of over 25,000 grads, and this year the top gong goes to one of the big hitters in the bean counting world, KPMG.
Close to a quarter of graduates surveyed (around 6,000 people) expressed an interest in working for KPMG, but the firm only took on a pale-by-comparison 310 grads in 2014.
Government bodies also ranked highly, with the Queensland Government making a surprise entry at number three on the list and institutions like the ATO (27th) and the Australian Defence Force (31st) also coming in close to the top.
Top Graduate Employers for 2015
- Queensland Government
- Coca-Cola Amatil
Source: GradConnection, AFR.
Graduate hiring season
The timing of this release is no accident; people in their last year of uni will be well aware that graduate hiring season has already kicked off for 2016 placements.
Every year in February and March, employers battle it out at careers fairs across the country to win the attention and affection of Australia’s top students.
The goal, of course, is to do everything possible to convince the best and brightest talent to sign-up to join their graduate programs next year.
For students it’s an incredibly stressful time of year.
They know that they’re well and truly battling against the odds to secure a coveted place on a graduate program, with limited spots, fierce competition and the added stress of ongoing study commitments all stacked against them.
But the alternative of not locking in a job for next year right now is even tougher.
Graduate Careers Australia (GCA) reports that only 68 per cent of 2013 bachelor students had found full-time work a full four months after graduating, the lowest result in 23 years.
Poor employment prospects mean the market is tilted in employers’ favour, explaining why graduate salaries are staying steady year-on-year.
GCA figures show that the median grad starting salary in 2014 was $52,500, compared to $52,450 in 2013.
Image: CollegeDegrees360, Flickr