2022 60% of students secured a job through work visa schemes


Again in 2019, the federal government introduced that the graduate route would launch in 2021, permitting UK worldwide graduates to search for work within the nation for a two 12 months interval or a 3 12 months interval for PhD candidates, with no need employer sponsorship.

Since its launch, the brand new visa route has been broadly credited with boosting worldwide recruitment for UK universities, alongside international market situations regarding the pandemic. The Office for National Statistics revealed that there have been 12,484 visa extensions granted within the new graduate class, with the bulk registering between July and September 2021.

Towards this backdrop of a world training technique primarily based on facilitating graduate employability, the Greater Training Statistics Company surprisingly announced that it could scale back response charge targets from worldwide graduates as a part of the graduate outcomes survey. In December 2021 HESA mentioned it could cease calling worldwide graduates to collect profession vacation spot information and the goal response charge can be lowered to twenty% in consequence. 

With an obvious void of knowledge on worldwide graduate outcomes, AGCAS has been working with college companions to conduct its personal pattern survey which was open to worldwide graduates who completed their research after June 2021. There have been greater than 1,000 respondents and the ultimate outcomes had been primarily based on an evaluation pattern of 345 respondents who had been registered on both the graduate route (85%) or the expert employee (15%) visas.

“It’s fairly baffling actually that within the worldwide training technique, the federal government mentioned that they had been going to work with the sector to actually improve the physique of proof that we have now about worldwide scholar graduate outcomes, while on the identical time the HESA coverage change actually restricted the quantity of knowledge that establishments have about their college students and what they going to do subsequent,” defined Helen Atkinson, careers marketing consultant at Newcastle University and co-chair for AGCAS International.

“For this reason we [AGCAS] determined to run a snapshot survey to know extra in regards to the experiences of worldwide graduates who’re searching for employment within the UK.”

The graduates surveyed studied at 52 UK universities with over 71 nationalities represented. Indian graduates made up the very best proportion of survey respondents (29%), a statistic which is in keeping with nationwide graduate visa information that reveals a 3rd of visas granted have been for Indian college students.

Unsurprisingly nearly all of respondents had graduated from a postgraduate course (77%) which now provides probably the most economical path to entry the UK training system by offering a complete visa window of three-years for one 12 months of college charges.

Regarding their job search after commencement, college students reported a aggressive jobs market with the bulk (42%) making use of for greater than 50 jobs of their search. Nevertheless the standing of employment 9 months after commencement was largely constructive: full time (60%), half time (7%), unemployed (26%) and different (7%).

By mapping graduate roles to authorities Commonplace Occupational Classification codes, AGCAS was additionally capable of decide that many of scholars who had secured employment had been in graduate degree roles (72%).

Students secured employment proper throughout the UK with the very best degree in London (29%) and a few working remotely (4%) and nearly all of college students confirmed that their expectations of the graduate route visa had been being met (58%) in opposition to those that had been dissatisfied (24%).

The outcomes additionally confirmed big selection of industries and organisation varieties using worldwide graduates, Atkinson continued.

“Some employers may not have a very streamlined recruitment course of when recruiting worldwide expertise”

“We may see universities and native councils [being named as employers] in addition to maybe the extra conventional organisations which have all the time been a bit extra inclined to recruit worldwide expertise like multinational organisations and monetary companies companies,” she mentioned.

“One factor that was actually fascinating, is that we did have just a few examples from the survey of enormous employers that had been recruiting graduates each by means of the graduate route and the expert employee route. This means that some employers may not have a very streamlined recruitment course of when recruiting worldwide expertise.”

AGCAS acknowledged the caveat that completion of the survey could have appealed to probably the most engaged alumni in a college group so could not signify the broader image. It hopes to run future surveys to construct on the information. Equally, the category of 2021 confronted lesser competitors from worldwide friends as the primary cohort who may safe the graduate route visa and stay within the UK looking for work.

No matter post-study work rights, feedback made by means of the survey revealed the extent of the problem worldwide graduates face in explaining their immigration standing to potential employers.

As a student-facing careers marketing consultant, this can be a downside that Atkinson is aware of must be addressed.

“A excessive variety of respondents reported these difficulties in explaining their immigration standing and employers refusing to just accept the graduate route as a legitimate proper to work,” she famous.

“We had cases of graduates telling us that they had been ghosted by recruiters once they had been requested about their immigration standing. We noticed fairly emotive, highly effective language [from student responses] speaking about having to ‘repair’ their immigration standing earlier than making use of for a job.”

Whereas universities and organisations resembling UKCISA, HEPI and UUKi have been making an attempt to speak the coed immigration adjustments to trade stakeholders the federal government itself has not dedicated to any formal campaigning.

Delegates attending the UKCISA annual convention referred to as for continued lobbying at nationwide degree for deeper analysis and engagement with trade to help worldwide graduates.

“We’ve solely scratched the floor by way of this analysis and we all know there’s much more work to be performed to actually analyse the information in additional element to attempt to perceive whether or not there are clear patterns that possibly influence worldwide graduate success,” Atkinson clarified.

“We are able to’t gloss over the truth that worldwide graduates are clearly having difficulties explaining their nation standing to employers”

“From our standpoint, we should have fun and champion the graduate route. It’s incredible information, however equally we are able to’t gloss over the truth that worldwide graduates are clearly having difficulties explaining their nation standing to employers throughout the recruitment processes.”

The UK authorities just lately introduced an extra Excessive Potential Particular person visa route geared toward attracting the world’s prime graduates and insiders say discussions are on-going between coverage makers about extensions to the graduate route to stay aggressive with immigration coverage from Canada and Australia.

Graduate employability will stay excessive on the agenda for UK universities as any dissatisfaction from worldwide graduates will shortly suggestions to markets and doubtlessly hurt future recruitment, stakeholders have warned.


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