AT A GLANCE

  • 70 percent of executives say that job prospects are better for the class of 2014 compared to last year
  • Employers said that they plan to hire 8.6 percent more graduates than initially planned
  • The highest employment prospects are for graduates with majors in business, computer science and IT, and engineering

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Jun 01, 2014

Job Prospects for 2014 College Grads

According to a survey conducted by Korn Ferry, almost 70 percent of executives say that job prospects are better for the class of 2014 compared to last year.

This optimism is echoed by a new survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), which indicates that 2014 college graduates should have an easier time finding a job compared to last year’s class. Employers said that they plan to hire 8.6 percent more graduates than initially planned.

Over 50 percent of hiring employers had a strong interest in bachelor’s degree graduates in accounting and other business fields along with engineering and computer science. And more than half also expected to hire master’s level graduates, including MBAs.

Employment Prospect by Major

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“The students graduating this spring have had front-row seats to a soft economy. But we’ve seen more employers recruiting on campuses around the country, and I think this will translate into jobs” ~Dan Black, President of NACE

Another survey conducted by Harris Poll for CareerBuilder found that most companies (61 percent) plan to offer graduates the same starting pay as in 2013. Overall, 56 percent expect to pay an annual salary that is less than $40,000. The average salary expectations from the students’ point of view for all majors is $38,494 annually with benefits including annual salary increases, 401(k) company match, and tuition reimbursement.

Average Salaries by Discipline

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Source: NACE

Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources for CareerBuilder says that 41 percent of employers do not believe that recent graduates are adequately prepared for roles in customer service. While most employers say that college graduates are ready to work in the real world, almost 24 percent don’t believe that educational facilities have adequately prepared students. Of employers who doubt the abilities of graduates, 53 percent think there is too much emphasis on book learning instead of real-world experience.

“These companies may think the graduates are academically strong, but they aren’t sure they are prepared for the complexity of today’s jobs. Companies are asking these questions about graduates: Are they just book smart? Or will they have street smarts as well? The marketplace is evolving at a faster pace than it did in the past, and academia may not be keeping pace with technology that businesses need.” ~Rosemary Haefner, Vice President of Human Resources at CareerBuilder

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