About one third of 2004 graduates are looking for work in the public sector. A survey by GTI found that 65% of those looking at the public sector wanted a job that was ‘worthwhile’ and contributed to society rather than making money. Some 55% saw the public sector as providing greater job stability and 54% rated better work-life balance as an important motivator.The Civil Service came out as most undergraduates’ top choice followed by local government – the latter probably a result of a hard fought awareness raising campaign and the National Graduate Development Programme. Most graduate recruitment literature is still geared towards the private sector, so it’s more difficult to find out about public sector careers. 70% of those surveyed said that university careers services have more information about private sector careers than careers in the public sector. As a result, 64% said it was “easier” to get a job in the private sector.
The Graduate Market Trends report published by Graduate Prospects found that 16.8% of vacancies are in the public sector. Within the sector 49.4% of graduate vacancies are in the civil service and 30.4 in local government, and education.