The 2014 job market for recent graduates has improved over the last two graduation job markets, but that improvement is uneven. For college grads aged 20-24 the unemployment rate this year is 4.4 percent, which is greatly improved from 7.2 percent last year according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is almost 3 times better that that of their peers possessing only a high school diploma, which is 13.8%! However, these unemployment rates vary widely depending upon the field.
Recent college graduates with degrees in health care are experiencing only a 3% unemployment rate. Furthermore, a lot of hiring is being done for those with computer software, nursing and other engineering, R&D, scientific, IT and technical degrees. Additionally, many engineering recruiters, scientific recruiters and technical recruiters who are part of my executive recruiting monthly roundtable have shared that many of their clients are actually paying recruiting fees for recent graduates. This is a sign that these technical fields are in short supply and high demand.
This contrasts with an unemployment rate of 8% for those college graduates with liberal arts degrees according to a recent study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Furthermore, not all engineering, scientific, R&D, IT and technical fields are in high demand among employers. For example, civil engineers and architects are finding it hard to land a job due to the continued weakness in the building construction industry. In these high unemployment areas when jobs are available they are usually temporary (contract) employment. Unfortunately, many recent graduates do not effectively mine these temporary opportunities.
Because of the slow growing economy countless companies fail to immediately hire full time employees due to the uncertainty of the future. However, they do often convert the best of the their temporary (contract) employees into full time positions after they prove themselves. That is why I recommend “Four Steps To Converting A Temporary Position Into A Full Time One.” This strategy will provide you a differential advantage versus your intense competition among other 2014 graduates for limited job opportunities. Please go to my recent YouTube video on the subject.