Competitiveness of graduates of universities - Marketing of educational services

Competitiveness of university graduates

As already noted, the competitiveness of a university largely depends on the competitiveness of its graduates, who are sellers of knowledge and skills in the labor market.

In recent years, the dynamics of demand in the labor market for specialists of a certain profile and qualification has come into conflict with their traditional training, which forces universities to take into account the demands placed on them by employers who believe that university training lags behind business needs.

According to the opinion of employers who are the customers of educational services, the main problems of universities that prepare graduates of economic specialties are obsolete programs and isolation from practice. However, these are not the only problems. Comparative analysis of the responses of interviewed employers in the period 2000-2010. showed an increase in their requirements for graduates of economic institutions of higher education (Table 5.7).

Table 5.7. Employers' Requirements for Graduates of Economic Institutions

Employers' requirements





Knowing the mission of a company

Fluency in a foreign language

Knowledge of computer and information technology

Ability to adapt to the company's business culture

Readiness to work in a team

Work experience

The ability of system thinking

Ability to process large amounts of information and isolate the main

Ability to apply in practice knowledge received in the university

Aim for Career

From Table. 5.7 it follows that the list of requirements for graduates of higher education institutions has significantly expanded over the past ten years. This is largely due to the development of new trends in the content and structure of jobs. Employers seek to provide greater flexibility for wage labor through job rotation, a variety of work habits, increased adaptability, continuous training, the introduction of flexible work schedules, and the like.

A modern graduate should have a so-called project-based type of thinking, which is not based on the desire for a stable and gradual career within the same organizational structure, but as an interest in a particular project and the recognition of professional colleagues.

Changes in the requirements of employers occur not only in the professional sphere of work, but also in the socio-psychological and socio-cultural planes. If the basic moral and psychological qualities of an employee were previously: discipline, knowledge of one's place in the organizational hierarchy and technological chain, commitment, the new imperatives focus on greater initiative and independence, the ability to work in temporary working groups (teams), a high motivation for retraining.

Western experts argue that the educational service is produced qualitatively only if the university knows its consumer and the employer's requirements.

Recently, United States employers have shown interest in establishing contacts with higher education institutions in order to determine the requirements for future specialists. Below are the results of a study conducted by an independent rating agency, "Reuters".


The results of the research showed a weak account of the real problems of the industry in the organization of the educational process and the lack of skills of the graduates in solving specific production problems (3.1%), insufficient level of knowledge and skills in the industry (2.9%), low level self-education of graduates, search of the necessary information (2,8%).

The negative factors influencing the fastening of young specialists at the enterprises were also revealed, among them insufficient salary, absence of the skill of independent analysis and solving of arising problems, as well as inability to apply the acquired knowledge. When hiring the most important criteria for employers are the reputation of the university, the availability of the graduate of the relevant specialty, the average score of the diploma. The reasons for the need for additional training of young specialists, which the enterprises are forced to carry out, were also identified. The most important of them are the lack of practical skills and skills, lack of experience in the team. The facts show that business has become more serious about education, as its development requires attracting more and more qualified specialists.

The competitiveness of graduates depends on their relevance to the labor market, which is determined by the level of knowledge obtained as a result of mastering the educational program, abilities and personal qualities.

According to employers, the competitiveness of graduates is characterized by the following factors: knowledge of modern technologies, the ability to conduct negotiations and business meetings, the ability to apply theoretical knowledge in practice, the ability to generate new ideas, motivation for career growth, life optimism, etc.

In the literature, various models are offered that characterize the competitiveness of a specialist. The model presented in Table. 5.8, is associated with success in both professional and personal spheres.

Table 5.8. Competitiveness model of a specialist

Competencies and abilities of the graduate


General scientific

Ability to conduct research activities

Ability to structure knowledge and conduct experiments

Ability to evaluate research results.

Ability to apply economic laws and theories, determine economic indicators

Ability to analyze, model and develop strategies

Ability to self-prepare

Ability to participate in the development of innovative methods, tools and technologies in the field of professional activity, etc.

General technical and humanitarian

Knowledge in the field:





Information technology;

foreign languages, etc.

Economic and organizational-managerial

Knowledge in the field:




Innovation management.

Ability to develop a business plan

Ability to organize team work


Knowledge, skills and abilities in a specific field of activity

A wide range of interests in a particular field of activity





Towards continuous professional growth

Towards continuous self-development

To Risk

To Leadership

Personal qualities




Hard work


Stress resistance

The competence components can vary depending on the market requirements and the educational program that the graduate learns.

Thus, the labor force is a real product on the labor market, where the principle of competition is increasingly asserted, and this product must correspond to demand, i.e. be competitive.

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