Graduate salaries in 2021Find a job
According to the High Fliers report, "The Graduate Market in 2019", the median starting salary for UK graduates in 2021 is expected to be £30,000 for the fifth consecutive year. However, graduate-jobs.com estimated that the average starting salary for graduates (based on the salary details of jobs posted to the site during the same period) was £21,000 - £25,000.
So why the difference? A problem with the majority of research conducted into graduate starting salaries is it usually focuses on the "Top 100" employers who compete with each other (inc. salary) to attract the "top" graduate talent. Therefore most graduate salary research is not a true reflection of the whole graduate recruitment market across.
Skewed salary figures can lead to unrealistic salary expectations amongst graduates. If you aren't starting your graduate job on a £30,000 salary don't conclude that it isn't a reflection of your value or potential value in the market.
We have created a definitive list of the realistic starting salaries based on the whole market using actual salary data from the past 10 years.
|Advertising & PR||22,250|
|Architecture & Construction||23,028|
|Arts & Design||22,606|
|Buying & Merchandising||27,934|
|Computing & IT||27,042|
|Distribution & Logistics||25,324|
|Education & Teaching||20,298|
|Energy & Utilities||23,252|
|Food & Drink & Catering||27,569|
|Internet & Digital Media||27,787|
|Legal & Law||21,945|
|Manufacturing & Production||23,176|
|Military & Defence||29,878|
|Research & Analysis||26,693|
|Science & Technology||26,659|
|Secretarial & Business Admin||25,322|
|Sports & Recreation||24,640|
|Travel & Hospitality||25,479|
Example: Your graduate starting salary
You are offered a starting salary of £18,000 per annum - here's what you can do
- Research whether this is in line with the industry standard for this position. There are a range of online resources to help you understand the industry average and what can be considered fair.
- If you don't think the salary is fair, you can negotiate, but remember how competitive the graduate job market is.
- Factor in the location, any perks that accompany the salary and any bonus structures also offered.
- Remember graduate salaries often increase rapidly during the early years of your career. You can expect to see you salary increase after a probation period and when you start to make a valuable contribution to their company.