According to a summer report published today by the Association of Graduate Recruiters, there is a 17 per cent increase in the overall number of graduate vacancies, when comparing 2014 with the last recruitment season.
The banking and financial services industries show the largest predicted increase of 54 per cent, with employers from 11 of the 13 sectors surveyed expecting to take on a larger number of new graduates in 2014.
Other sectors that highlighted an increase in vacancies included accountancy (24 per cent) and engineering (18 per cent). Only the fast-moving consumer goods and energy, water and utility sectors anticipate a decrease in vacancies, of 13 per cent and 9 per cent respectively.
The survey also shows that graduate starting salaries are set to improve, with the median rising £500 from last year to £,000.
However, the report also reveals that many employers still had unfilled vacancies at the end of the 2013 recruitment period, with 23 per cent of companies reporting this to be the case. Employers have indicated this trend is set to continue this year.
Stephen Isherwood, chief executive of the AGR, said: “The rise in vacancies and salaries shown in our summer report is fantastic news for graduates, and it is encouraging to see that employers are able to invest in graduate talent in this way.
“However, this doesn’t mean the job market is easy. There are still unfilled graduate vacancies as employers are not always able to find the right people, with the right knowledge, skills and attitudes, for the job. Graduates must ensure they really do their research, target their applications and ensure their CVs do them justice if they want to be in with a good chance of securing a place on a graduate scheme following university.”
Meanwhile, the survey also shows that employers appear to be monitoring the socio-economic diversity of candidates more than in the past. The report shows a 9 per cent percentage point increase in the number of employers doing this in 2014.