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PKU tops Mainland China’s universities in the Global University Employability Ranking 2017

DEC . 14 2017
Peking University, Dec. 13, 2017: On November 16, 2017, Times Higher Education, the leading provider of higher education data for the world's research-led institutions, released the Global University Employability Ranking 2017. Fifteen Chinese universities were among the top 150 in the list, which is an increase in the number of selected schools and an improvement in rankings from previous years. Of the fifteen prestigious institutions, seven were universities from Mainland China. Peking University has improved three rankings to attain the 14th place, and continues to retain its title of producing the best graduates in terms of employability in Mainland China.

The ranking system for the Global University Employability was designed by French HR consultancy Emerging, and has been conducted for the past seven years by employment research institute Trendence. Since 2015, the findings have been published exclusively by the Times Higher Education. The survey respondents comprised 2500 recruiting managers and 3500 managing directors of international companies from 22 countries. Most participants have had at least 10 years’ experience in the workplace and also worked at firms with more than 500 employees. Each person was asked through online platforms to list their criteria when hiring potential employees, identify the most valued skill set, and select the university they consider to be “the best in the world when it comes to employability”. The survey consists of 150 prestigious schools from 33 regions around the world.

This year's survey results revealed that the California Institute of Technology topped the list, followed by Harvard University, Columbia University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Cambridge, Boston University, Stanford University, Technical University of Munich, University of Tokyo, and Yale University who are in the top 10 rankings. In general, graduates from US universities tend to be in high demand from international employers. However, it has also come to attention that graduates from Asian institutes are establishing positive reputations and receiving favourable feedback from employers around the globe. Among the Asian institutes, the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology is ranked 12th in the world, and second in Asia; Peking University is ranked 14th in the world, and third in Asia. In addition, the Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Fudan University, Tsinghua University, Taiwan University of Science and Technology, University of Hong Kong, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Zhejiang University, Nanjing University, Taiwan University, University of Science and Technology of China, City University of Hong Kong, Tsing Hua University (Taiwan), and Chiao Tung University (Taiwan) are among the top 150.

The survey is different from previous ones as it pays close attention to the influence of today’s digital era of the information influx and the Fourth Industrial Revolution on employers’ ever-changing requirements for graduates. According to the analysis of the survey results, network and information security feature the highest, with over 30% of managing directors regarding these skills as necessary. Concurrently, the criteria for such technical skills vary according to the digital climate of different countries, with Chinese employers maintaining that graduates are struggling to fill AI jobs, possibly attributed to the country’s significant progress in this area.

From the perspectives of employers, skills and abilities that are deemed competitive and marketable are: communication skills, problem-solving skills, adaptability, proactivity, team work, creativity, emotional intelligence, stress management skills, curiosity, social awareness and leadership skills are most crucial. Nearly 85% of employers regard communication skills as the paramount, problem-solving and critical thinking skills are a close second, and finally adaptability, proactivity and team work.

Currently, employers are most satisfied with the graduates’ team work and communication skills. In contrary, employers are not content with the graduates’ leadership, stress management and emotional intelligence skills. In summary, there is still a gap between the skill sets of the graduates and the expectations of the employers, which is something future graduates need to take heed and improve on to adapt to the job market.

In addition, in early September this year, Times Higher Education released the latest 2017-2018 World University Rankings. Among the 1000 institutes from 77 countries and regions, Peking University ranks 27th in the world, maintaining its successive stride of being the nation’s leading higher education institute.

Times Higher Education’s editor Simon Beck attributed the outstanding performance of Asian institutes to said universities’ greater emphasis on nurturing talents that cater to the needs of the realities and requirements of enterprises. Therefore, graduates from Asian universities are increasingly gaining the approval and recognition of international companies.

Peking University has always ensured that the needs of both students and employers are met, and are in stride with the country’s current development and progress. In recent years, Peking University encouraged graduates to pursue employment at grassroots levels and the nation’s most critical areas, to serve both domestic and international affairs so as to contribute to the progress of social entrepreneurship. In the past two years, more than 90% of graduates from Peking University have been employed in the country’s key development fields, and the number of people employed in the western regions and grassroots programs have been increasing annually. Strengthening the close cooperation with major fields and enterprises, improving the employment information classification networks, upgrading the mechanism of targeted information delivery, and establishing WeChat groups for guidance on the different industries, can aid students in better understanding of both society’s and employers’ requirements on staffing and skills. By starting an early preparation on career planning and skill development, this ensures that students are able to achieve fulfilling and high equality employment experience. In recent years, Peking University graduates are able to attain an average of twelve interview opportunities, and an average of 3.76 offers or acceptance notifications. This means a job satisfaction of 87% and an employer satisfied of up to 97%, which illustrates the precise matching of the student’s individual career plan to the employer’s criteria.

Written by: Kemerly Wang
Edited by: Wang Chengsiou
Source: PKU News(Chinese)