Employment experiences of graduates

OUTPUT TYPE: Research report- other
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2003
TITLE AUTHOR(S): P.Moleke
KEYWORDS: EMPLOYMENT, GRADUATES, HIGHER EDUCATION, SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
DEPARTMENT: Economic Perfomance and Development (EPD)
Intranet: HSRC Library: shelf number 3085

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Abstract

People with higher education experience a persistent advantage in the labour market. Their likelihood of being unemployed is low; and when this does occur, the period of unemployment is of relatively short duration. When they are employed it is often in relatively better paid jobs. Such employees also gain in terms of knowledge and experience which further benefit them in the job market. However, this advantage is not experienced by all segments of people with higher education, as there are differentiations by race and gender. By regularly surveying graduates, a picture can be built up of their entry into and progression through the labour market. A regular graduate tracking system can potentially provide prospective and current students, as well as employers, with indepth information on the way in which the graduate labour market works, thus helping them to make realistic plans. It would also help planners to develop longer-term strategies for the development and retention of people with the necessary levels of knowledge and skill. This focus on graduates is essential, given the considerable resources invested in their education by both the public and private individuals. The first chapter presents findings on employment of graduates and includes: the period it takes them to find employment, the factors that influence employability, the types of jobs they find, their own perceptions of the relation of the level of jobs they found both to their qualification and the sectors of employment. Chapter two looks at unemployment, the period of unemployment and the reasons for unemployment. Chapter three reports on mobility in the South African labour market and its influences. Chapter four looks at moving abroad and the reasons for this choice. Chapter five covers further studies and investigates why graduates choose to continue with studies after obtaining their first degrees. Chapter six reports on graduates' perceptions of the skills they acquired through higher education.