Graduates Hit Hard by Pandemic: Employment Opportunities Tumble 66%

Published: 06 Jul 2021

Vacancy numbers for graduates and trainees have been hit hard by the pandemic, with the number of roles in the first half of 2021 down 66% when compared to the same period in 2019. That’s according to the latest real-time statistics from the world’s largest network of job boards, Broadbean Technology.

Graduate Employment Opportunities Hit Hardest by Pandemic

Broadbean’s data not only reveals that graduate opportunities are down on the pre-COVID levels of 2019, but they are also down 34% when compared to the first half of 2020, when the UK was in the grips of the pandemic. This suggests that, while the employment market as a whole is recovering exceptionally well – with the latest ONS data revealing a recovering jobs market for the second month in a row – the same cannot be said for the graduate and early careers arena.

With graduate opportunities falling, it is perhaps unsurprising to see that Broadbean’s data also reveals that applications per vacancy stand at 51 for 2021 – up 46% on 2019 numbers. This is indicative of the increased competition for graduate roles as employment opportunities tumble for trainees.

As Alex Fourlis, Managing Director at Broadbean Technology, explained: “It is concerning to see that graduate and early careers recruitment is faring considerably worse than other areas of the employment market. The fact that vacancy levels today are considerably lower than during the pandemic suggests that while employers are investing in experienced talent at a time when many sectors are contending with skills shortages, there is a real threat that this dearth of talent will be exacerbated in the coming months and years if graduate and early careers recruitment isn’t prioritised by companies.”

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