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CFA Graduate Survey Outlook 2024: Top 5 Most Confident Career Prospects are 1) Finance, 2) STEM, 3) IT & Telecoms, 4) Sales, Media & Marketing and 5) Education

30th May 2024 | Hong Kong

CFA Graduate Survey OutlookThe top 5 most confident career prospects are 1) Finance, 2) STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics), 3) IT & Telecoms, 4) Sales, Media & Marketing and 5) Education.  CFA (29/5/24): “The 2024 Global Graduate Outlook Survey released today by CFA Institute, the global association of investment professionals, found that respondents believe that finance offers the best career prospects in today’s current economic climate. Thirty percent of respondents ranked finance as the top sector in which they felt most confident for the second consecutive year, a six percentage point increase from the 2023 Global Graduate Outlook Survey.  The research revealed that graduates’ overall confidence in their career prospects has increased in recent years. Following volatility experienced during the pandemic, three-quarters (78 percent) of individuals surveyed are confident in their post-graduate futures, a considerable increase from 2021 (58 percent), when the survey was first fielded.  Graduates today seek professions that promise stability without compromising on the opportunity to make a difference, as 91 percent responded that they seek to make a positive social or environmental contribution through their careers.”

“ CFA Graduate Survey Outlook 2024: Top 5 Most Confident Career Prospects are 1) Finance, 2) STEM, 3) IT & Telecoms, 4) Sales, Media & Marketing and 5) Education “

 



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Margaret Franklin, CFA, President and CEO, CFA Institute: “As graduates today seek professions that not only promise stability but also resonate with their desires to make a tangible difference, finance emerges as an industry of opportunity. Our research shows that careers in finance offer the assurance of stability and provide a platform for graduates to contemplate a more impactful future. With a new focus on sustainable investment strategies, and the possibilities for AI to enhance investment workflows, graduates have an opportunity to help shape a more innovative industry through a career in finance.”

Peter Watkins, Senior Director, University Programs, CFA Institute: “Today’s graduates desire to attain real-world experience as they increasingly seek opportunities to differentiate themselves in a crowded job market. Organizations that continue to invest in upskilling and career advancement opportunities for their employees will be attractive to the next generation, who are keen to grow professionally.”

 

 

CFA Graduate Survey Outlook 2024: Top 5 Most Confident Career Prospects are 1) Finance, 2) STEM, 3) IT & Telecoms, 4) Sales, Media & Marketing and 5) Education

New York City, United States

AI is the “new normal” – With the entrance of AI in the workplace, opportunities to learn and embrace new technology rank as top priorities for new graduates. Two in three respondents (66 percent) believe that AI and automation are important to career success, and 92 percent believe that knowing how to use these tools will benefit their career prospects. Graduates are optimistic about the advantages of AI and automation tools, as only 8 percent said that it would have no benefit to their future careers.  Opportunities to apply these emerging technologies are especially top of mind for aspiring finance professionals. The survey found that of those who studied finance, 76 percent say that AI and automation are important to the success of their intended career path, and the vast majority (97 percent) agree that knowing how to use these tools will benefit them.

Graduates view real-world experience and skills as critical differentiators – Confidence in higher education and professional credentials remains, as 81 percent of graduates say their career prospects have improved as a result of undertaking a degree, but graduates agree that an additional edge is required to make their resumes most attractive to future employers. Practical skills, real-world work experience, and internships ranked as the most significant attributes that give graduates an advantage in the job market upon graduation.  The majority (81 percent) of graduates recognize the value of post-graduate certifications and qualifications in securing higher earnings and gaining a competitive edge in the job market. Further, 95 percent say upskilling or acquiring certifications are important, and 71 percent say certifications will have a large impact on their job opportunities.

What are graduates seeking in their careers? Despite increased confidence levels, when asked about their biggest concerns regarding career prospects, graduates said that low pay (11 percent), lack of jobs in their preferred sector (10 percent), and feeling unfulfilled or uninterested in their work (10 percent) rank as top concerns.  With around 90 percent noting the importance of making a positive societal impact, the survey also uncovered that graduates seek out employers with commitments to purpose, as 41 percent say that a company’s commitment to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors would definitely influence their decision to apply for a job. Careers in finance present an opportunity to make a difference and professionals are eager to put ESG factors into practice. Similarly, a survey of CFA Program candidates found that 88 percent expressed some interest in enhancing their understanding of ESG considerations in investment decisions.  The ever-growing influence of social media comes through in the survey. Respondents report they are as likely to seek career advice from social media as from college professors, and the report found a significant year-on-year increase in respondents seeking guidance from social media influencers.  More information on the survey results can be found at Graduate Outlook Survey 2024 | CFA Institute, and the full results of the 2024 Graduate Outlook Survey can be viewed here.

 

 

About CFA Institute

As the global association of investment professionals, CFA Institute sets the standard for professional excellence and credentials. We champion ethical behavior in investment markets and serve as the leading source of learning and research for the investment industry. We believe in fostering an environment where investors’ interests come first, markets function at their best, and economies grow. Spanning nearly 200,000 charterholders worldwide across 160 markets, CFA Institute has 10 offices and 160 local societies. 

The 2024 CFA Institute Graduate Outlook Survey was fielded via an online survey from March 19-April 8, 2024, by Dynata with a sample of 9,916 respondents studying for a bachelor’s degree or higher, or who have graduated with a bachelor’s degree or higher within the last three years aged 18-25. Respondents were from the UK, US, Canada, India, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong SAR, UAE, Germany, Spain, France, Brazil, Mexico, and China.




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