Most College Graduates Expect to Spend Three Years with First Employer

September 25, 2007 ( - More than 60% of college students expect to stay with their first employer for less than three years and 34% say they plan to change jobs every three to four years, according to the College Student Career Confidence Survey.

The survey of 247 recent college graduates and students found that only 16% never plan on spending more than three years at a job, while 50% expect to switch employers every five years or longer.

The top factors most important to college graduates when considering which employers to work for are:

  • Opportunities for career development
  • Work/life balance
  • Good rapport with bosses and co-workers
  • Employers valuing their opinions
  • Receiving positive feedback for a job well done
  • Getting information in a timely manner.

“Understanding what motivates recent graduates is important if you want to keep them in your organization for more than three years,” said Douglas Matthews, President and Chief Operating Officer of Right Management, in a press release about the survey. “Career development opportunities are one of the top motivators. Giving them a chance to develop professionally and advance in their careers will foster higher levels of engagement, productivity, and retention.”