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Fierce competition among graduates for jobs

The graduate jobs market is showing some signs of improvement in areas such as telecoms, engineering, retail, utilities, IT and energy. But overall a 4 per cent reduction in vacancies has been forecast for the summer, with fierce competition expected between graduates.

A survey from the Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) has revealed that the country's top employers are receiving on average 85 applications for every job.

Vacancies dropped by as much as 45 per cent in the banking and financial sector, where an average of 135 graduates applied for each job. But it was in the retail sector, in particular with businesses dealing in low-cost items such as toiletries and groceries, that competition was keenest, with companies receiving 211 applications on average per vacancy.

Advice to graduates from the AGR was to 'be competitive and strategic' and 'keep persevering'. But for those graduates who don't have degrees in the 'right industry', some say they may stay in education rather than meet disappointment in the 'bleak' jobs market.

Acas offers training for employers to ensure that they get the most out of the Recruitment process, from finding and appointing the right employees to settling them in and getting the paperwork right.

Visit the Acas Training and Business Solutions page for more information.

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