Research by Universum Shows What Today's Graduating Class Wants

NEW YORK, March 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Universum, the global Employer Brand Research Firm, released its 2014 rankings of the IDEAL™ Employers in the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. Based on a survey of more than 46,000 undergraduate students, the IDEAL rankings reveal which employers are most attractive to today's students and more importantly, why. This year's research uncovered some interesting trends about how students today are thinking about work.

"As the competition for top talent grows increasingly fierce, it's more important than ever for employers to be proactive about building brands to attract the right people," said Melissa Murray Bailey, President – Universum Americas. "Through the survey data, employers can gain insights about the preferences of their target group and leverage that information to build a message that resonates. These rankings celebrate the employers that have made deliberate investments in their employer brand."

Job security, while still a top priority, decreasing in importance

Students' top career goals are, for the most part, returning to pre-recession levels. As in recent years, students' top career goal this year is to have work/life balance, followed by job security and being dedicated to a cause. While job security saw a sharp jump after the financial crisis and has been consistently important ever since, we are now seeing a slight decrease in its importance. The relative importance of job security and being dedicated to a cause has returned to pre-recession levels, perhaps as a result of optimism about greater economic stability.

Students keeping their options open…

This year, the average student is considering more employers than any time in the past five years.  Students' open-mindedness towards employers could be driven by optimism about their job prospects; it could also simply be the result of encountering more employers on campus than ever before.  Regardless of the cause of this trend, it has serious implications for employers.  It means good news for smaller, less known employers who have a higher chance of being considered by students; however, it also means that competition among employers is fiercer than ever before.

"One of the biggest challenges employers face right now is differentiating themselves from their competition," Bailey commented. "Because students are so open-minded about their employers, it's more important than ever for employers to stand apart from the crowd."

…but ultimately want to find a place to grow

Despite this increase in considered employers, students are also indicating a desire to stay at their first jobs longer than they did in the recent past. This year, between 47 and 64 percent of students (depending on their major) expect to stay 5 years or longer at their first job. In the last three years, the number of students expecting to stay longer than 5 years at their first job has increased by at least six percent across main fields of study.

"The Millennial generation is perceived as one that isn't loyal to their employers, staying at their jobs for only 1-2 years," Bailey commented. "However, the students taking our survey tell us differently. What we often see is a mismatch between students' expectations and the actual experience as the reason they end up leaving an organization relatively quickly. It is imperative for employers to develop and communicate a strong and true employment value proposition."

Industries fluctuate in popularity

The popularity of different industries varies for students across majors. For business students, consulting, auditing, and financial firms are growing in popularity, while fashion and retail companies took small hits. The energy industry continues to grow in popularity among engineers, as well as operations and strategy consulting. Government agencies and military services are becoming less popular for engineers.

Who are this year's top employers?

Top 10 Rankings – Business Students:


Google

1

Walt Disney Company

2

Apple

3

EY (Ernst & Young)

4

J.P. Morgan

5

Deloitte

6

PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers)

7

Nike

8

Goldman Sachs

9

KPMG LLP

10


Top 10 Rankings – Engineering Students:


Boeing

1

NASA

2

Google

3

Lockheed Martin Corporation

4

General Electric

5

ExxonMobil

6

Apple

7

Microsoft

8

Walt Disney Company

9

Intel

10


Top 10 Rankings – Computer Science Students:


Google

1

Microsoft

2

Apple

3

Amazon

4

Facebook

5

Blizzard Entertainment

6

Sony

7

IBM

8

Walt Disney Company

9

Intel

10


Top 10 Rankings – Natural Science Students:


National Institutes of Health

1

Mayo Clinic

2

Centers for Disease Control

3

American Cancer Society

4

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

5

Google

6

Peace Corps

7

Walt Disney Company

8

NASA

9

FBI

10


Top 10 Rankings – Humanities:


Walt Disney Company

1

Google

2

U.S. Department of State

3

United Nations

4

Teach for America

5

FBI

6

Peace Corps

7

Apple

8

NBCUniversal

9

National Security Agency (NSA)

10

For complete rankings please visit: http://bit.ly/1jvB1gg

About Universum

Universum is the global leader in employer branding, providing end-to-end solutions that empower organizations to become better at attracting, recruiting and retaining top talent. Founded in 1988, Universum's mission is to create the best match between employers and potential employees by providing knowledge, guidance and actionable insights. The company gathers and analyses insights about the career expectations of 700,000 students and young professionals annually in more than 30 countries, and serves as a trusted partner to 1,200 clients globally, including many Fortune 500 companies. With its headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden, Universum is a privately held company with offices in 12 countries.

Click here for more information.

Jonas Barck
Mobile: (858)-405-5711
E-mail: jonas.barck@universumglobal.com

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140325/NY89986

SOURCE Universum



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