Join the industries and companies benefitting from PhD graduates

New research from the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute with CSIRO into the employment outcomes of PhD graduates shows that PhD graduates are gaining qualifications they intend to apply in the workforce, outside of academia. Over 50 percent of PhD graduates indicate they intend to leave academia and work in business or the public sector upon completion of their degree.

While around half of those with PhD degrees remain in the research and higher education sector, the rest are electing to work in business (23%) or in government and non-government organisations (24%). The greatest beneficiaries have been the banking, finance & insurance industries, mining, oil & energy, and the medical & pharmaceutical industry.

More than 70 percent of PhD graduates work for very large employers, including universities, that employ more than 500 staff, with less than a third finding work in SMEs and larger organisations.

According to the research, businesses with less than 500 employees employing PhD graduates are across an array of industry sectors, including medical services & technology (19%), business & property services (14%), environmental goods & services (12%), and media services & technology (11%).

Those in the STEM-related fields showed a higher interest in working outside of academia.

The report highlights that the enterprise skills (problem-solving, resilience, communication, innovation and creativity, etc.) acquired and developed by PhD graduates leads to a high level of employer satisfaction with those PhD graduates they employ.

How has your business benefited from the skills, research and expertise of PhD graduates working in your organisation? Did you know government rebates are available to SMEs and larger companies to support business transformation and innovation with the expertise of PhD interns? Learn more here. Share your experiences and start a conversation by leaving a comment below.

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Paolo Damante is a Senior Policy Officer at Ai Group, contributing to education and training policy, having formerly worked as a Senior Adviser to the Victorian Minister for Education. He has over a decade's experience in public policy, with a particular focus on education. Prior to joining Ai Group, Paolo worked as an adviser to a number of federal and state parliamentarians, and also had a career in banking and finance. He also holds a Master of Diplomacy and Trade.

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