Stat of the day: 32%

The percentage of graduate jobs left unfilled last year, according to the Association of Graduate Recruiters.

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013
The fact that unemployment among 16-24 year-olds hit 1m a few months ago hasn’t strayed far from the headlines since – so it’s all the more surprising that a new report from the Association of Graduate Recruiters has found that one in three graduate jobs were left unfilled last year, because employers felt candidates didn’t have the right skills.

Despite the fact that there are ‘at least’ 48 applications for every graduate vacancy available, the AGR said there had been a ‘lack of applicants’ or ‘poor-quality applications’ during recruitment drives in 2010-11. In fact, 40% of the employers surveyed (including the likes of M&S, Ernst & Young, GCHQ, John Lewis, the Bank of England and Grant Thornton) said up of 5% of their vacancies remained unfilled. Some even had to widen the pool to school-leavers.

But although the UK’s skills crisis has been blamed, the report added that in some cases, it’s the employer’s fault: some industries are suffering because grads don’t want to put up with long hours and inflexible working. Graduate want a job that ‘allows them to have a life’, it said. Although set against the context of that unemployment figure, some might argue that beggars can’t be choosers…  

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