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Employers Global Salary Trends

Graduate Recruiter October 2014 cover

The Association of Graduate Recruiters(AGR) is an employer-led membership organisation, whose goal is to ensure that all member organisations can recruit and develop the best student talent for their needs and the needs of the UK economy.

With a diverse network of over 700 members, they work closely with employers, the education sector, and supplier partners to represent big employers in the UK.

They invited me to contribute to a special piece on their magazine on the latest IT used in the world of graduate recruitment: Graduate Recruiter. This magazine is published every two months, and is considered as “an essential guide to the latest developments and innovations in graduate recruitment”.The article is published in the October issue of 2014. Here is the original article submit.

You can read the online version of the magazine here.

It is on page 28-29. Here is a scanned view of the two pages here.
employer 7 page 22-23

Employers Global Salary Trends

By Ms. Susan Gatuguta Gitau, Analyst & Project Manager;

& Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director QS Intelligence Unit

salary-survey-2014

The QS Global Employer Survey has been running for the past ten years. In 2014, nearly 29,000 employers from 24 main industries in 134 countries completed the survey, providing invaluable data for the Employer Reputation component of the QS World University Rankings® as well as strategic insight into current recruiter trends.

The value of basic compensation offered by employers in Eastern Europe and Latin America falls below $20,000 per annum. This outcome is mirrored by the findings from the Global Cost of Talent Index from Universum. Students from some countries within these respective regions displayed low salary expectations. The Asia Pacific, Western Europe and US & Canada compensation is valued above the global average while Africa & Middle East falls 5% below the global average.

Chart 1 – Average graduate compensation offered by national, regional and global recruiters

employer 1

The global average salary has steadily increased since 2011 signalling a steady recovery from the deep global recession. The fastest rate of growth was experienced in 2012, this, symptomatic in the uptake of confidence in the global economy.

Chart 2 – Global average salary in US dollars (USD)

employer 2

Northern European employers are seen to offer the highest compensation on the whole, with Denmark and Norway offering the highest salaries. Southern Europe, by contrast, draws the lowest salaries. Countries classified within this sub region i.e. Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta, Spain and Turkey have fared poorly in the global recession and are laden with heavy government debt that has had a domino effect on business viability, at the local and national level. Switzerland ($92,550) offers the highest salaries in Western Europe with Swiss respondents displaying a greater preference for Masters Candidates. Swiss employers, furthermore, display steady year on year compensation.

Chart 3 – Average salary in Western Europe

employer 3

Australasian employers (Australia and New Zealand) offer the highest salaries in the Asia Pacific region, approximately$19,000 above the regional average. According to the Australian Graduate Survey, the median starting salary for new bachelor degree graduates aged less than 25 and in their first full-time employment in Australia is AUD $52,450 . At $11,230, Central Asia (Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan) falls far below the regional average salary.

Chart 4 – Average salary in Asia Pacific

employer 4

Comparing local and international employer compensation

The gap between domestic and multinational recruiters is most significant in the Asia Pacific at 27%, equating to a shortfall of $10,000. Comparatively, Western Europe boasts the narrowest gap with local pay at 6% less than their intentional counterparts. Eastern European domestic recruiters exhibit the second highest pay gap at 20% below international recruiters.

Globally, a 35% gap exists between domestic and international employers – however this gap is seen to shrink over time. Multinational companies coordinate recruitment on a global level, and do not want to drive top candidates away from key geographies because of a salary differential. As international companies set up operations in emerging markets, they are increasingly willing to pay more for candidates who they see as critical to establishing a foothold in each region. Over time, it is likely that differentials with local companies will diminish, as they respond by trying to attract talent for equivalent positions globally with more competitive salaries and bonuses.

Chart 5 – Salary differentials between local and multinational employers by region

employer 5

Salaries by industry

The Pharmaceutical sector is the highest paying sector with an average salary of $34,880 and offers the highest average Postgraduate salary at $40,590 (offered by national, regional and global employers). It is the financial industry, who follows a close second in terms of postgraduate salaries, whilst leading with the highest Undergraduate salaries at $31,690. The average starting salary for the Pharmaceutical sector, at $31,570, a mere $120 behind.

In comparison to postgraduate candidates, the highest compensation gap exists in Pharmaceuticals at 29%. A postgraduate degree is equally a favourable option in Consulting, Finance and Other industries, all of whom post an average compensation gap over 20%. Undergraduate and postgraduate salaries are drawn closer in Technology with a 15% compensation gap.

Table 6 – Average salary by industry sector

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Employers

Interested employers could contact us at Dr. Christina Yan Zhang, China Director, QS Intelligence Unit at Christina@qs.com for other detailed information about various reports QS produced to support employers to identify the best graduates globally.

student-loan

Student loans: Challenges in reforming loan structure

The issue of student loans has been flaring up on both sides of the Atlantic quite recently, with some serious implications for higher education if many of the changes were to be implemented in the next few years.

In the US, the efforts of the administration to enact legislation that will ease the financial burden incurred on university students by way of their student loans and the federally subsidized grants has been a major point of friction with Republican opposition. Student loan debt is estimate to close to 1 trillion USD, increasing at a staggering rate of 300% in ten years , whereas the average debt load for the graduates of higher education is approximately $20,000 on average. Given the recovery phase of the US economy and the financial woes that have troubled it since 2008, it becomes obvious that debt restructuring is a key issue.

The importance is twofold. Student loans are proving to be a heavy financial burden, stifling entrepreneurship and forcing many graduates to abandon career aspirations and seek even low-paid employment in order to repay their loans; in the days of the financial crisis aftermath, many find themselves still unemployed and with a negative credit score, painting a rather bleak personal picture of the future. In addition the student loan apparatus involves the federal government, the universities and a series of market players, such as debt relief companies and others, which makes reform not only gruelling but also politically tense.

In the United Kingdom, the government will be conducting research on the issue of student loans, although the department of Business, Innovation and Skills has not confirmed a change in policy. The UK has a relative advantage to the US system since tuition for undergraduate study is capped at £9,000 per year. The system is also more generous, since it allows repayments only if the graduate is employed and earning over a certain amount and the debt itself has a 30 year write off term limit, with outstanding fees written off after that period has elapsed.

The proposed research will be exploring the possibility of making universities partially responsible in underwriting student debt. In theory, this would lead to a closer connection between the graduates and the university, perhaps increasing the investment and effort UK universities will need to put forth in order to ensure high employability rates for the students. It will also mean a shared and thus diminished risk taken on by the Treasury, reducing exposure for the government.

The key issue in the UK remains that if such moves were ever to be implemented, debt to earnings ratios within universities would shrink or even disappear, making universities less able to secure their financial position and thus undertake large and important steps in improving infrastructure, offer scholarships and bursaries to under-represented groups and of course continue to strive for improving educational services without the worry of debt repayment in a flux economic climate. In fact, any alteration to the student loan scheme would have to take under consideration the realities of tertiary education and the job market so as to ensure that the drive for minimal government exposure to debt would affect the teaching quality and outcomes in universities.

Bitcoin-coins

$100 worth of bitcoin for MIT students

Quite an unusual gift will be given to all the undergraduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (about 4,500 of them) at autumn 2014: USD 100…worth of bitcoins. Bitcoin is a virtual currency using a peer-to-peer network to make payments. Currently* one bitcoin can be bought for USD 653 according to Coinbase.

Read more

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MOOCs: Employers view, a brief snapshot

Discussions surrounding Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have increased with an international momentum attracting both proponents and opponents. Perceived as a response to an ever digital and highly connected world, MOOCS are a platform for thousands of courses offered by world class institutions. This global platform continues to grow in popularity expanding far beyond the US. Multilingual platforms are now available in China and France, while Latin American and Middle Eastern initiatives are underway.

MOOCS, however, are still in their infancy and yet to glean global recognition from recruiters.

In order to measure employers’ perspectives, QS Intelligence Unit canvassed recruiters and their position on MOOCs in the annual QS Global Employer Survey.

Recruiters were asked whether they were familiar with MOOCs and of the 4,654 employers who responded, 71% said that they were not.

Perhaps what was most interesting was the regional distribution of responses. The highest proportions of recruiters with awareness or familiarity of MOOCS were based in Eastern Europe and US & Canada, from Kazakhstan, Russia and the United States. Latin America and Western Europe evidenced the greatest proportion of graduate recruiters who were unaware of MOOCs. A greater proportion of recruiters from Africa & Middle East displayed a  familiarity in comparison to their Asia Pacific counterparts.

A regional breakdown is presented below:

 

moocs1

 

 

Those sectors to which  respondents responded positively were Consulting (24%), closely followed by Technology (22%) and Industry (17%).

 

moocs2

 

Tracking a quickly evolving initiative such as MOOCs would be essential for higher education sectors and potential students alike. We at QS will continue to monitor the evolution of this phenomenon with the aim of maintaining a pulse on the market.

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Preliminary results from the 2014 QS Applicant Survey

The QS Applicant Survey 2014 is one of the largest surveys of its kind. It gives valuable insights about the thoughts and aspirations of applicants pursuing an MBA or postgraduate degree. It is compiled by QS, the world’s leading higher and business education specialists, and distributed globally to over 10,000 potential applicants that register for the various QS education fairs held around the world. The results depict a clear picture of the status, attitudes, goals and ambitions of applicants, and how they, and the employment and education markets for young professionals, are changing.

The 2014 survey acquired over 9,000 responses across Masters, MBA, PhD and EMBA applicants. Preliminary results draw interesting comparisons among applicants from Western Europe and US & Canada. 39% of survey respondents are interested in Masters Programs, 62% were drawn towards the MBA programs and 16% of respondents registered an interest in the Executive MBA programs.

chart 1_2014 preliminary

 

75% of the applicants from the US & Canada intend to apply for MBA programs. This is in line with the traditional popularity of MBA programs among American students. On the other hand, MBA programs attract 46% of the Western Europe applicant pool. Executive MBAs are more attractive to candidates from Western Europe, with 20% of the applicants indicating an interest in the program. This observation is another example of the rising popularity of Executive MBA Programs. They offer flexibility with increasing travel opportunities. However, traditional Masters Programs still hold their ground in Western Europe, the proportion of applicants is marginally higher than the MBA.

 

chart 2_2014 preliminary

 

The gender trends in both regions are equally varied. The chart above presents the current expectations for male and female applicants. There’s a wider gender gap among Western European applicants in comparison to their American and Canadian counterparts.

Once the survey is closed later this year, final results would be interesting to examine. In today’s quick changing environment, trends can change quickly.

run-run-shaw

The philanthropic legacy of Sir Run Run Shaw(Part Three)

Local versus Global Endowment

Shaw’s  education endowment is managed through the Shaw Foundation Hong Kong Limited, the Sir Run Run Shaw Charitable Trust, and Shaw Prize Foundation Limited. It supports the local education of the Chinese in mainland China, and  through The Sir Run Run Shaw Scholarship Program for Graduate Studies, hundreds of Chinese and other Asian students have been supported to pursuit postgraduate study overseas in the US and UK, at universities including Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge and Oxford.

 

Possible Actions for national policy makers:

  • Could central government do more to encourage private sector to play a more active role in financing domestic students to study/work/volunteer overseas, especially in the world’s most dynamic economies? The British economy needs to collaborate more with overseas emerging markets, especially with the BRICS, the ASEAN nations, and Africa and Latin America. This means that they need more employees who understand more about local markets overseas. It makes sense for the UK (or other western nations) to support their domestic students to have overseas experience in exchange for a few years employment with those companies.

 

 

maya-home-black-web_r1_c1Humanity Without Borders

When education institutions think about endowment, alumni fundraising is often their first thought. After all, why should one contribute to the development of an educational institution if one has never been educated there and benefited from this life-changing opportunity?

However, we also know that the sciences are without borders. The Brazilian Government “Sciences Without Borders” scholarship scheme is intended to send 101,000 Brazilian to study STEM subjects and the creative industries at top universities around the world.

Recognising that science knows no frontiers, when he was at his 90s, Shaw established the Shaw Prize, to recognise outstanding achievements in Astronomy, Life Science and Medicine, and Mathematical Sciences. While astronomers regularly receive the Nobel Prize for physics, and there is a Nobel prize for physiology and medicine, there is none for maths. Since its foundation of 2004, 54 leading scientists from around the world have received this prestigious prize, and seven of them later won the Nobel Prize. The total prize amounts to HK$240 million (£19 million). Due to its growing influence and prestige, the Shaw Prize has been nicknamed the Nobel of the East.

 

Possible Actions for national policy makers:

  • When individual philanthropists consider to repaying society and educational institutions through education endowment, could they consider this principle of “Science Without Borders” and “Humanity without Borders?” They might set up a Nobel Prize or Shaw Prize- type award to support the advancement of human civilisation as a whole, rather than just the university or the country who cultivated them. What should national government and inter-governmental organisations do to encourage this approach? Tax relief already exists for most such donations in most nations.
  • One might object that most important disciplines are already covered by Nobel Prize and the Shaw Prize, and others such as the Kavli Prize. Well, there are six subject areas in the Nobel Prize and three overlapping areas of the Shaw Prize. The QS World University Ranking by Subject includess, 30 main disciplines which most top universities around the world offer. This leaves over 20 subjects that are waiting for the next Alfred Nobel or Sir Run Run Shaw to recognise.

 

Some of these subjects are hot topics for us all nowadays, including Environmental Science, Earth and Marine Science (the subject of the Vetlesen Prize), which helps to address global warming and pollution; and all the engineering and technology related subjects. We now appreciate that 3D printing, invented in 1984, only became global headline news in 2013, and other new subjects are emerging all the time. If a billionaire really wants to spare a few million dollars per year to help the world to become a better place collectively, finding the right discipline to award won’t be that difficult.

'GIVE' surrounded by British pound sterling symbols - Charity concept

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The philanthropic legacy of Sir Run Run Shaw (Part One)

Sir Run Run Shaw, the Hong Kong media mogul died on 7th Jan 2013 at the age of 106. In the  48 hours after the news about his death, there were more than 500 pieces of news in English on the subject, and 3,500 in Chinese. Most western media associated the legacy of Sir Shaw with his success in the entertainment industry, especially his work in introducing Kung Fu movies to the west. But instead of adopting this approach, most of the Chinese media featured detailed discussion of his philanthropic activities in the education sector.

 

According to the official statement from the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China, Shaw has donated more than $ 4.75 billion HK dollars (370 million GBP) since 1985 to create more than 6013 education projects covering 31 provinces and cities throughout mainland China. This endowment, benefited tens of millions of students from primary school to university. If we also include the figure of his donation to the healthcare in mainland China, it is a staggering total of more than $ 10 billion HK Dollars (785 million GBP)

 

On 7th January 2013, a picture demonstrated the distribution of Sir Run Run Shaw Buildings around China become a media sensation in mainland China, it is said that a search for his name in Baidu map, the Chinese google, there are more than 30,000 education, hospital and research buildings in mainland China that are named after him. This picture was named by the Chinese netizens as the picture that “Touched the heart of China”. On day after his death, there are more than 2.5 million results of weibo discussion on “The Sir Run Run Shaw Buildings” in Sina Weibo, the Chinese twitter. A current trend is for people to take photos of the lecture halls, and libraries donated by and named after Shaw, where they have spent years studying. The idea is to show their respect to this philanthropist, who is widely considered as PRC’s greatest private contributor to the education sector ever.

 

What could the rest of the world learn from the role of Sir Run Run Shaw in his philanthropic activities in the education sector?

 

Figure 1:

A search for “Yifu”, the Chinese name of Sir Run Run Shaw in Baidu, there are more than 30,000 results. A picture that is considered “Touched the Heart of China”.

Sir Run Run Shaw Map


Public-private Collaboration

The Sir Run Run Shaw Foundation will only consider fundraising proposal recommended by a selected pool of experts employed by the Ministry of Education in the PRC. Also higher education institutions which submit proposal for endowment are required to commit to fundraise three times the funds donated by the foundation. So once a university submits a proposal to the foundation, it will already have official backup from the municipal or provincial governments who will be committing to finance the rest of the project to make the submission eligible, or alternatively, the institutions themselves will need to finance the rest.

 

For example, in 1986, Sir Shaw donated HK$110 million to 11 Chinese universities. Each of those 11 Chinese universities either gets another HK$30 million from its municipal or provincial government, or manages to finance the rest itself.

 

 

Possible Actions for national policy makers:

  1. A model, varying in detail from country to country,  could be developed between the public and the private sector to establish a joint partnership to finance the country’s education sector;
  2. Governments, and national organisations for the education sector, might consider a more open-minded and flexible approach to encourage private sector involvement in education endowment.

 

 

Life-Long-LearningLifelong, Comprehensive, Unbiased Endowment:

Universities are widely considered to be the phase of education with the biggest potential returns for individual venture capitalists, investors or entrepreneurs. The majority of fund receiving by the education sector goes to higher education, rather than to schools or further education.

 

However, further education has played a crucial role in the upgrading of some of society’s most deprived communities. For example, it is a central part of the European Commission’s life-long learning agenda.

 

In the case of Shaw, 80 per cent of his endowment went to schools, special schools and technical institutions, and only 20 per cent to universities.

 

 

Possible Actions for national policies makers:

  1. HEFCE published a report entitled Philanthropy to UK Universities (the Pearce Report) in 2012. It sets the target of £2 billion a year in charitable gifts to UK universities by 2022.  The relevant national bodies could undertake a similar review process to boost schools and further education. . The recommendations of these reviews could be amalgamated to form a coherent UK national strategy for philanthropic endowment in education. Other nations could adopt the same approach.

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Please click here to read Part 2 of this article.