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More than one-fifth of recent graduates are working part-time, official figures have revealed.Only six in ten (63 per cent) of degree students who graduated in 2010/11 reported that they were in employment six months after graduation, according to a report from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.
Of the 224,000 graduates surveyed, a further 8 per cent were both working and studying, 16 per cent were solely in further study and 9 per cent were unemployed.
Of the graduates who had entered employment – including those both working and studying – 69 per cent were employed full-time, 22 per cent worked part-time, 5 per cent were self-employed or freelance, and 4 per cent were in voluntary or unpaid work.
The number of graduates entering part-time jobs or self-employment rose from 20.8 per cent and 4.4 per cent respectively the year before.
In terms of occupation, the greatest proportion of university leavers – 45 per cent – entered managerial or professional roles, although those in part-time work were more likely to be in sales or customer services jobs.
Overall, recent graduates were the least likely to be ‘process, plant and machine operatives’ or enter skilled trades.
Recent figures from the Association of Graduate Recruiters showed that there were still 73 applications for each graduate vacancy in the 2011/12 recruitment season – although the number did fall from a record high of 83 the previous year.
The AGR survey also found that the average graduate starting salary climbed by £1,500 to £26,500 in 2012, after a three-year standstill.