How Does the Average Starting Salary Compare to What Graduates Expect?

When university’s over, the first port of call for most graduates is to find a graduate job and kick-start their career.

However, as graduates embark on their job hunt are they setting their expectations too high when it comes to starting salaries? A recent survey conducted by UNiDAYS would suggest so.

What salary do graduates expect?

Having spoken to over 2,000 undergraduates, UNiDAYS found that the average starting salary they expected to earn was £25,150. This figure is a staggering £6,000 more than the actual graduate salary average!

The survey also revealed that:

  • 83% of those surveyed would feel happy with a starting salary of £25,000
  • Only 51% would be happy with a £20,000 starting salary
  • 66% of students expect to have secured a job within three months of graduating from university
  • More than half expect to earn £30,000 or more within three years of graduating

What’s a realistic graduate starting salary?

Graduate Jobs report that a more realistic average graduate salary is between £19,000 – £22,000. This figure is based on the vast number of graduate roles and sectors that they cover.

Here at Bridgewater Graduates, the majority of our entry-level graduate roles offer between £20,000 – £24,000, with opportunities in London offering more (£26,000 – £30,000).

Do graduates need to lower their expectations?

The data from UNiDAYS certainly suggests that some graduates need to be more realistic about their salary expectations.

Having some relevant work experience under your belt may help you to negotiate your starting salary, but it is important to remember that your starting salary is just that – the salary you start on. Many businesses will regularly review and increase graduate salaries once you have been fully trained and can start proving your worth.

Graduate jobs      Electrical wholesale jobs

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