Every year the National Association of Colleges and Employers (naceweb.org) surveys companies to find out about their plans to hire new college graduates. The Job Outlook for 2017 grad report published last fall, showed that hiring for Class of 2017 grads in the fall expected has fallen 5.2 percent from 11 percent same time last year
On the surface, a 5.2 percent drop doesn’t sound like a desirable thing at all, but that figure can’t be seen as separate from the US’ current 4.4 percent unemployment rate. Right now the US is nearing what economists call ‘full employment’. This means the percentage of unemployed Americans isn’t expected to go up or down anytime soon. With a stabilized unemployment rate, businesses often have to increase wages in order to pay workers that are now getting harder to find. It’s about supply and demand.
This is good for new graduates because, despite the potential decrease in hiring, the report indicates that a number of employers who think that the job market is currently good for graduates is up almost 8 percent. Couple that with a high probability that wages will go up and 2017 isn’t looking as bad for a new grad. It’s good when finding employment doesn’t feel like a minefield, but new grads should remain aware of the serious competition for good jobs. Graduates with multiple internships, study abroad experiences, higher GPAs and campus leadership experiences will get hired first!
Article by Raz Robinson, journalist and freelance writer, based in New York City and Philadelphia. You can connect with him on LinkedIn, email at razrobinson9(at)gmail(dot)com, or follow on Twitter @razrobinson.