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What is the average graduate salary?

The average graduate salary will depend on several factors such as career type, industry and location. You may arrive at your graduate salary in different ways if you have a salary bands in place for instance. Luckily, there is information out there that takes these factors into consideration and produces an average graduate salary report. The three reports that many graduate recruiters use to benchmark their salaries are produced by High Fliers Research, the Institute of Student Employers (ISE) and GOV.UK.

The High Fliers Survey 

The average graduate salary is £30,000. This has remained unchanged since 2015. The figures do not include additional benefits such as relocation allowances, regional weighting, subsidised company facilities or bonus schemes. This survey asks companies in the Times Top 100 Graduate Employers.

Here's the breakdown by sector:

- Investment banking £50,000
- Law £46,000
- Consulting £45,000
- Oil & energy £40,000
- Retailing £36,800
- Banking & finance £32,500
- Media £32,500
- Consumer goods £32,000
- Technology £32,000
- Accounting & professional services £30,600
- Engineering & industrial £28,000
- Armed Forces £27,800
- Public sector £24,200

The ISE Survey

Graduates starting with 151 ISE member had a median starting salary of £29,667.After three years this had increased to £40,000

Here's the breakdown by sector:

- Charity & Public sector £26,000
- Built environment £27,500
- Energy, Engineering & Industry £28,000
- Retail & FMCG company £29,000
- Health & Pharmaceuticals £29,125
- Finance & Professional Services £31,425
- Digital & IT £31,500 
- Legal £38,250


The Graduate Labour Market Statistics (GLMS) covers labour market conditions for English domiciled graduates and postgraduates and compare these to English domiciled non-graduates. This edition of the GLMS summarises the annual employment and earning outcomes data for graduates, postgraduates and non-graduates in 2020. All earnings data in this publication are calculated for full-time workers only.

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