Students entering the workforce are “doubling down” on financial security and innovation-first industries, according to Universum’s “World’s Most Attractive Employers” rankings 2020 published today (1 October).
“High future earnings” came in as the number one priority for respondents, with Universum reporting that this had dominated even more so than in 2019.
The educational research centre found that “innovation” in engineering and IT sectors were selected as a priority for nearly half (46%) of the 219,500 business, engineering and IT students surveyed.
Google, Apple and Microsoft were the top three employer brands in the report, with Amazon, Volkswgaen and J.P. Morgan posted among companies who gained the most points from last year.
Universum said employer branding leaders “must rethink work culture” in the work-from-home era.
Among business students surveyed, over 40% reported that they prioritize a “friendly work environment” (second only to “high future earnings” as an ideal employer attribute).
The swedish research centre emphasised that for HR and employer leaders, the “pressure is on” to redefine company culture and community in this online working period.
Richard Mosley, chief strategist at Universum, said: “This year we witnessed interesting shifts in industry preferences among students across the globe.
“What we are witnessing is a strong desire among students to work for industries which are more associated with tech innovation which are shaping the future.”
Mats Röjdmark, CEO at Universum, added: “When the pandemic hit, leaders in employer branding were in crisis mode, reacting to a situation that was entirely new.
“Now we see a shift to long-range planning; companies are focused on how to build best-in-class recruiting and employer branding programs that not only tolerate the new normal of virtual work, but leverage it in unique ways.”