5 things graduates look for in employers

Students are increasingly driven by personal values when making career choice

A recent survey by Singapore’s 100 Leading Graduate Employers (S100) has seen an encouraging shift in local graduates expressing interest in the technological industry. It observed that more graduates across all disci-plines of study are viewing this industry as the next big frontier for their early careers.

Says Mr Isaac Hee, managing director of GTI Media Asia: “Each year, we see tech firms and employers with strong in-house tech divisions steadily climbing the ranks. Despite the buzz surrounding the disrupting effects of the tech industry and the advent of Industry 4.0, it seems that graduates across the board still see the tech industry as a winning bet.”

While the sector may be gaining steam among graduates, a majority of students still keep a lookout for various factors that would make an employer or an organisation the ideal choice. Of 13,874 respondents, 76 per cent highlighted that moral and ethical factors play an integral role in their decision-making process.

These are the top five attributes graduates consider during their job search:


Good career prospects

These offer assurance that there are opportunities for promotion and professional growth.


Positive employer leadership

Effective and principled leaders are more likely to motivate their staff to excel in their work.


Opportunities for personal development

These help to develop skill sets, be it soft skills or personal interests, beyond one’s job scope.


Appreciation at work

Receiving recognition for putting in effort at work offers great job satisfaction.


Friendly colleagues

This, and a positive and collaborative environment that is free from office politics, is ideal for bringing out the best in everyone to succeed.

These findings have not changed much over the years. Previous surveys conducted have shown that graduates tend to make career deci-sions that correspond with their personal values and principles.

On the flip side, according to Mr Hee, employ-ers are stressing the need for current students and graduates to work on soft skills such as commu-nication, teamwork and problem-solving, as well as develop a sense of curiosity and an appetite for learning.

He highlights that the key to developing soft skills for success lies in the pursuit of the unknown.

“Do things that are genuinely interesting and fun for no other reason than having a good story to tell later on. Do things that scare you now,” he says.

“When you put yourself out there and are constantly trying new things, you’ll pick up lots of useful soft skills in the process.

“The best weapon for dealing with a constantly changing world is a keenly-sharpened spirit of curiosity.”

About S100

The Singapore’s 100 Leading Graduate Employers (S100) Awards is organised by GTI Media to recognise and celebrate excellence in graduate recruitment practices.

It is also a benchmark for local recruitment practices among recruiters and graduates.

The award ceremony recognises the most outstanding graduate recruiters in the country via their Overall Rankings, and those who stand out within key industry sectors via their Sector Rankings.

Established in 2010, the award is determined solely by votes from university students. The voting is done via the Singapore Graduate Barometer, an annual survey conducted in partnership with universities across the nation.

A total of 18 awards will be presented to the most popular graduate recruiters in Singapore.

The survey is conducted at 28 local universities and institutions during student and recruitment events. Respondents go through a multi-stage process that identifies the career sectors they are interested in, the most appealing employers (from a curated list), and their top three preferred employers. They also have the option to nominate employers that are not featured on the list.

For employers who wish to be included in the list, they have to hire a specific number of graduate roles every year or have a proven track record of consistent student-graduate engagement over the years.

The survey and rankings are completely independent of employers’ commercial relationships with GTI Media.

Visit www.singapores100.com for more information.

AIA Singapore
Inspiring a fulfilling career
Read More »
Ministry of Health (MOH)
Close to heart
Read More »