CollegeGrad Hiring Up 11.8 Percent in 2008

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State College, Pa. — Jan. 30
As students begin their spring semester at college campuses nationwide, announces the Top 500 Entry Level Employers for 2008. Great news for the Class of 2008: Entry-level employers are increasing their hiring by 11.8 percent in 2008. This is the largest projected increase in entry-level hiring has seen since 2005.

The Top Entry Level Employers list represents more than 165,000 jobs for the class of 2008 and is available online.

“This is an impressive number of openings for 2008,” said Brian Krueger, president of “Even in the midst of a challenging economy, college grads are in very high demand, and employers are competing to attract top skilled candidates in all industries.”

The list details the 2008 entry-level hiring plans for employers nationwide and includes links to the home page, careers page and college page for each employer. Each employer page also details projections for intern hires and master’s level hires for the 2008 recruiting year.

Among the 2008 Top Entry-Level Employers listed by, 60 percent anticipate hiring more college grads in 2008 than 2007. Twenty-one percent will hire the same number, and 19 percent will be hiring fewer college grads than in 2007. At the top of the list, Enterprise Rent-A-Car plans to hire 8,500 new grads, while the smallest featured employers will hire as few as 10. But large or small, the good news is they are all enthusiastically hiring the class of 2008.

While the list includes many return top employers from previous years, such as Lowe’s, Liberty Mutual Group and Sodexho, there are many exciting new additions to the list, including EMC, with 1,200 planned hires, FactSet with 550 planned hires and hi5 Networks with 20 planned entry-level hires.

Significant growth is being projected by companies of all sizes and in all industries throughout the list. Among the largest companies, Progressive Insurance is projecting a 42 percent increase in entry-level hiring for 2008. Fund for Public Interest Research is projecting an impressive 260 percent growth in hiring — going from 125 entry-level hires in 2007 to 450 in 2008. Growth like this by companies across the board will help to provide this year’s graduating class with a truly favorable job market.

What specific challenges will college grads face in their entry-level job search for 2008?

“Globalization continues to transform the business landscape,” said Blane Ruschak, national director of university relations and recruiting for KPMG. “This has led to an increased hiring emphasis on college graduates that possess or have the ability to acquire global skills and competencies.”

In the midst of an increasingly global economy, and with an unprecedented percentage of professionals reaching retirement age, employers look to college grads to breathe new ideas and bring expanded skills and fresh perspectives into the corporate world.

“We consider campus recruiting the lifeblood of our organization,” said Monique Brannon, director of recruiting for Grant Thornton. Tony Gibert, recruiting director for Naval Sea Systems Command Warfare Centers, agreed. “New college grads are a very important part of our workforce. They not only bring a ‘new’ perspective coupled with global knowledge of technology applications and communication tools, but also show a contagious enthusiasm, work energy and initiative.”

Krueger reminds college students that although the 2008 job outlook is favorable, a successful job search requires a concerted and focused effort. “It’s never too early to start your job search.”

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