Stockholm, January 18th, 2018 – Today, Universum released its annual Cost of Talent report. This year’s report is based on the feedback from 533,351 Business and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) students from 29 of the 36 countries that participated in Universum’s 2017 Talent Survey.
In order to assess the cost of talent in each country we asked Business and STEM students what they expect to earn in their first job after graduating university, the exact question being: What salary do you expect to earn in your first job after graduation? (Please provide a before-tax salary, excluding commissions and bonuses).
Talent are more empowered than ever before to choose where they start their professional careers and remuneration will always be a key factor in their employment considerations. Achieving optimum talent attraction requires that you provide competitive wages, however it should not require that you overpay to accomplish this. In order to remain competitive you have to match your Employer Branding and wages with the salary expectations of your country, market and industry.
Business vs. STEM
On the whole, our data shows that STEM talent expect higher earnings than their business counterparts. The largest difference between these two main fields of study can be found in Canada, where both Male & Female STEM students expect higher salaries. Female STEM students expect to earn 1,1 times more than females who studied business, while Canadian males with degrees in STEM subjects expect to earn 1.2 times more than their male peers who studied business. Out of the 29 countries that were included in this report, Russia and the UK were the only outliers to this trend. In both cases male and female business talent from Russia and the UK expect to make more than STEM talent from their respective countries.
Discussing this trend, Universum’s CMO, Jonas Barck, said “over the past two years it has been well publicized that just about every industry is seeking to recruit more STEM talent. Even industries that were traditionally dominated by Business talent like the banking and financial sectors are trying to compete with the IT sector for STEM talent”. Barck continued “One of the reasons we are seeing STEM talent expect more remuneration is that they know their skills and knowledge are in demand”.
Universum’s MD for the Americas, Jonna Sjövall, added “The current global cost of talent is very much aligned with the cost of living in each country, so the differences between markets make complete sense. The most sought-after talent are well aware of their market value – this year we are seeing interesting differences between STEM and Business talent that varies market by market based on the scarcity of jobs”.
Employer Size/Industry vs. Salary Expectations?
In all the countries that were included in this year’s Cost of Talent report, we have found that Business and STEM talent who want to work for macro employers expect to earn more money. One such example of this is Spanish business talent which expects to earn 31% more than their business peers in the same country who would prefer to work for a small employer. Although Swedish Business students who prefer macro employers envisage earning a higher salary, they only expect earning 4% more by working for this type of employer.
In all of the 29 countries that took part in this report, male talent in both fields of study expect to make more than their female peers. A comparison of salary expectations between genders from this year’s survey shows that business talent from Malaysia, Sweden and Canada have the smallest gap in salary expectations, whereas business talent from Russia, India and Spain displayed the biggest disparity in terms of expected income.
Universum is a global leader in employer branding. Over the past 25+ years, we have established ourselves in 60 markets globally and our diverse workforce is physically present in 20 countries. Our services include actionable research, strategic consulting, and data-driven communications and social media solutions for talent branding, sourcing, and analytics. We are a trusted partner to over 1,700 clients, including many Fortune 500 companies, as well as to global media partners that publish our annual rankings and trend reports. We work with over 2,000 universities, alumni groups, and professional organizations to gather insights from students and professionals in order to advise employers on how to attract and retain talent that fits their culture and purpose. On an annual basis, Universum surveys over 1,500,000 students and professionals worldwide.