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Birmingham is often referred to as the second city of the UK, and it is home to some of the best universities in the country. Students who study there and graduates who stay there are part of a leading European city but how does that impact their career ambitions, their academic achievement and how ready they are for the workplace?

Job title Location Salary
Zurich - Mechanical Engineer Graduate 2015 Programme West Midlands Competitive
Halfords Industrial Placement - 1 Year Marketing, Redditch West Midlands £14,500 + benefits
Graduate Software Development Analyst East Midlands, West Midlands £20 to 24.5k
Deutsche Bank - Regional Analyst Graduate Program: GTO Technology - Birmingham West Midlands Competitive + benefits
Deutsche Bank - Regional Analyst Graduate Programs - Birmingham West Midlands Competitive
Halfords Graduate Development Scheme - Marketing, E-Commerce West Midlands £24,000 + benefits
Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Manchester - February Start East Midlands, West Midlands, North West, North East, Yorkshire £20,000 + Commission depending on experience + benefits
Warwickshire Wildlife Trust - Trainee Opportunities Across The Midlands West Midlands Bursary of £9000
Deutsche Bank: Train to Hire West Midlands Competitive + benefits
Hilti - Rail Specialist Account Manager - Midlands & South West South West, East Midlands, West Midlands, North West Competitive + benefits


Birmingham

Home to several large universities in the West Midlands, Birmingham's students and graduates are still dwarfed in the vastness of the city. More recently being used as an alternative to London and the South East, graduates can find a range of opportunities there. However, for those who studied there we were interested to see what impact the great city had on them and their career plans.

We looked at data collected from graduates who registered to the site between 2009 and 2014 and compared their desired sectors, what grades they achieved and whether or not they had work experience. From the study we found that Birmingham still has the potential to compete not only with London, but the rest of the country also.

Sectors

Birmingham, its universities and its graduates are a vast mix of backgrounds and ambitions and so we can see that from the most popular sectors amongst Birmingham's graduates they are right in line with the national average. Not only are the most popular sectors Management, Marketing, Banking, Advertising and PR and Finance, but they are also in the same order of popularity as those from the whole UK.

One thing to note about the results from Birmingham's graduates' career ambitions is that they are extremely varied and there is no outstanding career choice for the graduates. This can be seen in the small difference between the top 5 preferred sectors, there is just 7.6 percentage point gap between Management, chosen by 32.5% of Birmingham graduates and Finance chosen by 24.9%.

Most Popular Sectors

Degree Classification

The policy on awarding different classifications of degree is not regulated and varies from university, however there must be something in the water in the West Midlands. Graduates from universities in Birmingham must be very attractive to employers as a staggering 11.5% of graduates received the top classification, a First Class. This is the second highest in the UK, second to Manchester, and well over the 9.8% UK average.

As for 2.1s, the rate they are awarded are not as high as places like Sheffield and Liverpool, but at 56.7% Birmingham's graduates have worked hard enough to exceed the national average of 48.1%.

Degree classifications for Birmingham graduates

Work Experience

Looking at the figures for the work experience achieved by graduates from Birmingham you begin to wonder when they had time to fit it all in. Not only were Birmingham second highest in the UK for achieving the top classifications, but they were second highest in the UK for having work experience alongside their degree too.

An impressive 17.9% of graduates from Birmingham also had work experience to offer employers alongside their degree. This surpassed the national average of 16.6% and was only slightly behind Sheffield, who had 18.7% of graduates with work experience. This is something for Birmingham's graduates to feel confident about when applying for graduate jobs.

% with work experience from Birmingham graduates

Graduate Jobs by sector in Birmingham
Accounting Internet / Digital Media
Advertising / Public Relations Languages
Architecture & Construction Legal & Law
Arts & Design Management
Banking Manufacturing and Production
Buying & Merchandising Marketing
Charities Media
Computing & IT Military & Defence
Consultancy Property
Customer Service Public Sector & Services
Distribution & Logistics Recruitment
Education & Teaching Research & Analysis
Energy & Utilities Retail
Engineering Sales
Environmental Science & Technology
Finance Secretarial & Business Admin
Food & Drink & Catering Sports and Recreation
Health Telecommunications
Human Resources Training
Insurance Travel & Hospitality
News for Graduate Jobs in Birmingham Date
Support for graduates staying in university cities… 23 October 2014
Loughborough tops student life survey… 5 October 2014

Shortlist

Recruiting

Recruiting now:

Graduate FasttrackVine GraduateHigher the TalentturnstoneSpencer Harrington
GSKeonFDMsmith williamson logoAldiJust IT Training Ltd
John Lewis 2014
foxtons
Jeremy Gardner Assoc
FCA Financial Conduct Authority
RM plc
Manchester Airport Group 2014
The Army logo
Kuehne Nagel
Lloyds Banking Group 2014
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
BP International
Waitrose 2014
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Decathlon
Accenture Oct 2014
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
KPMG
National Audit Office
AstraZeneca Nov 14
Barclays
Hogan Lovell
explore learning
BAE 2014
Morrison Oct 2014