Female graduates are more likely to get top graduate roles than male students, but they are less likely to apply, suggests a new survey.
The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) found that although women make up over half of the student population, only 47 per cent apply to graduate schemes. Despite this, the women who do apply are more successful than men, averaging at 49 per cent of hires.
The survey also found that the number of female graduates hired varied from sector to sector. Although law firms accounted for, on average, 58 per cent of female hires, IT and engineering firms only accounted for 27 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.
Stephen Isherwood, Chief Executive at the AGR said, “Despite investment to develop a more diverse graduate workforce, there remain considerable barriers. Improving gender diversity is less about changing selection processes and is largely an attraction challenge. Many female students don’t apply for the top programmes when they should.”
“Graduate employers want to hire women, there are lots of opportunities out there and these candidates are more likely to succeed, so we need to address why they’re not applying. Industry-wide collaboration to tackle student perceptions will be a key step forward.”
“We know women are hugely successful in the selection process, more so than, men. We just need them to realise it. We need them realise it. We need to boost confidence and encourage more female graduates to reach their potential.”
The survey comes as new research by Girlguiding found that girls’ confidence falls the nearer they get to a working age.
The research found that only 31 per cent of girls aged between 17 to 21 felt confident in themselves; compared to 63 per cent aged between seven to ten.
Girlguiding Chief Executive, Julie Bentley said, “This new research shows girls are lacking in confidence at an important stage in their lives when they are starting to think about the future, enter work or begin university.”