25 June 2018 • HOP, Hein Cuppen
Graduates get jobs even more quickly, but salaries are lagging behind
Recent graduates are finding it easier to find permanent jobs and are earning more than last year. Still, their salaries are not yet back at the level of ten years ago. Strikingly, a degree from institution X earns more than the same degree from institution Y.
How are recent graduates and graduates who graduated ten years ago doing on the labour market? Research by Elsevier and SEO show that university of applied sciences students find substantive jobs within 5.7 months on average after being awarded their diplomas. These jobs are for at least three days a week and they earn a reasonable salary ‘above the minimum wage’. Academicians take one month less.
The differences between degree programmes remain large. Doctors and dentists find work within one-and-a-half months, while language specialists and historians take nearly a year. University of applied sciences graduates in the health care and technical sectors get jobs almost as quickly as before the economic crisis, ten years ago.
The average gross monthly salary is rising ‘excruciatingly’ slowly, but for both university of applied sciences graduates and academicians, the level of ten years ago – with inflation corrections – are still a long way away. Before the economic crisis, university of applied sciences first time workers earned 2,446 euros gross on average compared to 2,186 euros now. For academicians, this is 2,878 euros and 2,641 euros respectively.
Not that large
Elsevier concluded that the scarcity of highly educated people is apparently not that large that employers pay higher salaries. “Even all that complaining about staff shortages in education, health care and technology is not leading to university of applied sciences graduates and academicians to earn higher wages.”
Of the university of applied sciences graduates, the big earners are maritime officer graduates and graduates of general operational technology degree programmes, at about 4,500 euros gross a month. Dancers and graduates of skin therapy have to make do with 2,100 euros after ten years.
Elsevier points out the labour market position of teachers – they get jobs quickly at an average salary. Even after ten years, most have permanent contracts, “but that they are so much in demand on the labour market was not reflected in their pay slips until recently.” Their monthly income of 2,363 euros average is in stark contrast to other teachers with a university of applied sciences diploma. Ten years after graduation, they earn 3,000 to 4,000 euros.
Differences between institutions
Among graduates of the university of applied sciences degree programmes on nature, the environment and chemistry, graduates of the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences earn the most (3,405 euros) and those of the NHL University of Applied Sciences the least (2,968 euros).
Explaining the differences
Elsevier states three reasons for these differences. First, the effect of regional labour markets. A university of applied sciences student who studies in Friesland and then works there earns less than someone in the Randstad. Second, the quality and the level of motivation of the students. What is more important to them, the salary or the work itself? And third, the quality of the degree programmes can explain the differences. The one prepares students better for well-paid jobs than the other.