New study shows employers value job ready graduates

Monday, 07 July 2014

UA logo 2014

A new study based on in-depth interviews shows employers are putting graduates at the heart of their strategies to innovate and grow.

University Alliance, representing Oxford Brookes and top universities for employability in science, technology, design and the professions, is today publishing a new report, Job Ready: Universities, employers and students creating success.

The report is based on extensive and in-depth interviews with over 50 employers around the UK and captures a snapshot of the 21,000 interactions with business that Alliance universities undertake each year.

Oxford Brookes’ excellent links with business and industry is reflected by the University Alliance’s use of case studies involving the University when launching the report.

…if we could clone our recent Oxford Brookes graduate we would do it without hesitation.

Simon Husband, Director of the Richardsons Group

In one example, Simon Husband, Director of the Richardsons Group comments: “Oxford Brookes University has sent us some really high quality graduates to train as accountants. It’s not just about the pipeline of talent, although I have to say if we could clone our recent Oxford Brookes graduate we would do it without hesitation.”

The interviews as part of the study show that employers are demanding more from their graduates with modern jobs increasingly requiring employees to be forward thinking, problem solving and entrepreneurial.

It is clear from the interviews that universities are good at preparing students for this future reality, but that it works best when they partner with employers.

This report from University Alliance demonstrates the importance of Oxford Brookes’ work to support our students in gaining an extra edge in the workplace.

Professor Janet Beer, Vice-Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University

Professor Janet Beer, Vice-Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University, commented: “Oxford Brookes is committed to ensuring that our students have the opportunities to grow and develop the skills that employers want. The University has strong links with prestigious employers such as BMW, IBM, Dyson and Oxfam to name just a few.

“Our students benefit from fantastic placement and mentor opportunities with top industry professionals, while entrepreneurialism amongst those studying at the University continues to grow year on year.

“Students from Oxford Brookes receive real opportunities to develop both professionally and personally. This report from University Alliance demonstrates the importance of Oxford Brookes’ work to support our students in gaining an extra edge in the workplace.”

The report highlights that a partnership approach between universities and employers helps to ensure course content, and therefore skills learnt, are relevant and kept up-to-date and can be flexible alongside the changing demands of local labour markets.

Libby Hackett, Chief Executive of University Alliance, said: “At a time when most of the employment growth in the UK is in graduate-level jobs, those involving analytical, problem solving and complex communications, it is important that we ensure universities are working closely with employers.

“What we see is that by building close relationships, such as those described in our new report, universities and employers can maximise talent, plug skills gaps and create progression routes for people from a wide range of different backgrounds.”

Further information is available on the University Alliance website: