Experimental official statistics

Key performance measure 16

Employers think that graduates are equipped with the required skills and knowledge

Most Institute of Student Employer respondents and nearly two-thirds of YouGov respondents are able to recruit the quality of graduates they want.

What does this show?

We want to understand if employers think graduates have the right knowledge and skills to do their jobs effectively.

To do this, we asked employers if they were able to recruit the quality of graduates they wanted in their latest recruitment cycle. We considered positive responses to be ‘always/almost always’ and ‘often’.

The high percentage of positive responses indicates that employers are generally satisfied with the quality of graduates they recruit and they think the graduates have the right knowledge and skills for their jobs. 

There is, however, a significant minority of respondents that is only sometimes able to recruit the quality of graduates they want. This suggests that at least some employers are not satisfied.

These results are based on three surveys commissioned by the OfS and delivered by the Institute of Student Employers (ISE) and YouGov in September and October 2020. Respondents were from a range of sectors, business sizes and locations across the UK.

Further information

The measure shows the survey responses to the question ‘Are you able to recruit the quality of graduates you want?’.

  • Frequency: Annual
  • Population: A total of 930 valid responses were received from the three surveys: 172 from the ISE survey, 303 from the YouGov private sector survey and 455 from the YouGov public sector survey. The number of responses are subject to change on a yearly basis
  • Data sources: Three separate surveys commissioned by the OfS and delivered by the ISE and YouGov*. Respondents are individuals within the graduate recruiting organisations
  • Available: TBC.

The ISE generally represents larger employers who recruit at least 10 graduates annually and offer formal graduate recruitment programmes. Consequently, responses to this survey represent a proportionally large share of the graduate labour market. Responses are unweighted. The ISE survey was open 1 September-7 October 2020.

YouGov delivered two surveys; one for private sector organisations (conducted between 20-22 October 2020) and one for public sector organisations (conducted between 20-27 October 2020). Responses from the YouGov private organisations survey are weighted according to their number of employees. Overall, results are representative of the UK private business sector. Weightings are not applied to responses from public sector organisations.

The survey conducted by the ISE did not include the option ‘don’t know’ as a response to the question. In order to compare results between the surveys, the number of respondents who replied ‘don’t know’ in the YouGov surveys have been excluded from the denominators when deriving the percentages.

Also, the ISE survey included the option ‘almost always’, whereas in the YouGov surveys the option was ‘always’. These have been combined into one in this analysis: ‘always or almost always’.

Published 03 November 2021
Last updated 06 December 2021
06 December 2021
Minor wording updates

Describe your experience of using this website

Improve experience feedback
* *

Thank you for your feedback