How do graduates start their career?
This new annual survey replaces DLHE (Destination of Leavers of Higher Education) and it asks graduates for details on the activities they're involved in 15 months after completing their studies. Each year, feedback is expected from over 400,000 graduates. The survey will provide a deep understanding of the Higher Education sector and captures the perspectives and current status of recent graduates. The survey is run by HESA (Higher Education Statistics Agency) who are experts in UK higher education data and analysis, and the designated data body for England.
The History of DLHE and Oblong
Back in 2012 Oblong won the contract to cleanse the Destination of Leavers of Higher Education survey. Oblong completed 6 years of tidying and enhancing the company data within the survey (~2 million graduates). To achieve this, we received daily feeds of non-personalised graduate employer information, to which we added various attributes, including SIC code, employee size, company registration number and a standardised company name, from free-flowing text.
Our ongoing involvement
Oblong are delighted to have been contracted to work on the Graduate Outcomes survey. The main difference with the new survey is a change in the date graduates are surveyed, moving from 6 months after graduation to 15 months. It also aims to capture rich, robust and innovative data about graduates, using a future-proof and efficient methodology. Historically, Oblong received data for the DLHE survey during the months of March-May. The new survey will mean we will be receiving data throughout the year.
Standard Industry Classification
Over the years we've developed self-learning software to deal with the classification of company data. Our software has been finely tuned to work with HESA data. This project uses our Business Data, Unity matching software suite and AutoSIC sofware to add industry classifications - SIC codes - to companies that employ graduates. Our dedicated manual research team quality check most of the data and infill the gaps where the system can't add an SIC.
Standard Occupational Classification - New
We are excited to announce that, as part of the Graduate Outcomes survey, Oblong has been contracted to add occupation classifications - SOC codes - to summarise the type of job each graduate undertakes for the company they work for. We'll be using our new self-learning AutoSOC software to add classifications. This will be followed up by manual quality checks on most of the data and manual infill on those the system can't classify.
Other Elements, Standardisation & Consistency
Along with SIC and SOC, we'll be adding Companies House registration numbers and employee size ranges to the data. We'll also be cleaning up the employer postcode and providing a standard cleaned company name so that each company entity only has one standard name within the data. We'll also be manually reviewing the data at the end of each quarter to make sure elements are consistent across the survey.
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