12th August 2016

Home-ownership and personal debt cast aside as students focus on career

New research from Endsleigh - the UK’s number one student insurance provider, founded by the NUS 50 years ago – reveals UK students are taking positive steps towards planning their careers after graduation, amidst a backdrop of political and economic uncertainty.  But highlights that some students lack confidence when it comes to employability and entrepreneurism after graduation.

Endsleigh’s 2016 Student Survey, finds the majority of students (65%) are planning to become established in their career, before owning their own home or paying off personal debt. But less than half (49%) of the students surveyed actually feel ‘confident about gaining employment’ after graduation.

The findings are part of a new study which has been conducted in collaboration with the NUS Insight Team and OnePoll as the new academic year approaches. Comprising three separate surveys, the overall study encompasses views from over 4,300 people: students and parents across the UK.

Alongside positive career ambitions, students have healthy lifestyle aspirations too - a ‘good work/life balance’ and ‘securing a suitable job’ were ranked as the most important factors for their future. But when it comes to earning after graduation, parents’ expectations are much higher than students’.

Less than half (45%) of students expect to earn up to £26,000 in their first year of work, while the majority (70%) of parents expect their children to be earning that level of salary. Endsleigh urges students’ and parents’ to manage their expectations because in reality the average graduate wage is £4,000 less - £22,057 on average in the UK (according to the Higher Education Statistics Agency 2015). 

Further highlighting students’ cautious determination, the study found half (50%) would sacrifice the option of a bonus to secure a job but three-quarters (75%) do not plan to own or run their own business in the future – perhaps indicating there is a lack of confidence to take entrepreneurial steps in the future. 

Commenting on the findings - Sara Newell, Head of Student & Graduate Markets, Endsleigh, said:

“This first wave of results from our 2016 study shows students have clear career ambitions and a healthy approach to work/life balance, but it also highlights areas for concern. For example, a lack of confidence in areas such as employability, salary levels and entrepreneurism. Endsleigh has been supporting students for 50 years, and during that time we’ve seen generations of students graduate and adapt to life away from university. 

“Every generation inhabits a new world, different to their predecessors, but our mission remains constant: to help young people realise their ambitions – whatever life throws at them. We believe the financial services industry must work in collaboration with the business sector to support young people and help them make their career goals and lifestyle aspirations a reality.”




These findings are the first wave of results from a study exploring students' and parents' expectations and motivations which Endsleigh will publish gradually during autumn 2016.

Endsleigh's 2016 Student Survey comprises three separate quantitative surveys, totalling 4,372 parents and students. The study has been undertaken in collaboration with the NUS insight team and OnePoll.

  1. From 10th June to 12th July 2016the NUS Insight Team surveyed 1,872 students about their experiences, expectations and motivations.
  2. From 1st to 20th July 2016 OnePoll surveyed 1,000 parents of undergraduate university students who lived away from home during their first year of university, about the students’ experiences, expectations and motivations.
  3. From 20th June to 11th July OnePoll surveyed 1,500 undergraduate university students across the UK about a range of topics, including gadgets, possessions and security.

Source for £22,057 figure: Higher Education Statistics Agency 2015: www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/careers/what-do-graduates-do/what-do-graduates-earn/



Endsleigh is the trusted brand for student insurance, and the only insurance provider recommended by NUS. Originally founded in 1965 to serve the student market, Endsleigh has since broadened its products and services for graduates and professionals, as well as being the preferred insurance supplier for a variety of trade unions and professional organisations. The company offers a wide range of services including motor, home and travel insurance. Wholly owned by Zurich Insurance Group since 2007, today the company also offers a wide range of insurance products and solutions for both students, graduates and professionals, as well as being the preferred insurance supplier for a variety of trade unions and professional organisations. Products include motor, home and travel insurance as well as business insurance through Endsleigh’s Business team and financial advice through the Endsleigh Financial Advice team. More information can be found: www.endsleigh.co.uk/personal/financial-advice/


For further information, please contact:

James Deacon – FleishmanHillard Fishburn

O +44-(0)208-618-2978 | M +44-(0)7525-223-924 |  james.deacon@fhflondon.co.uk

Rachel Veevers – Endsleigh Insurance

O +44-(0)1242-866-196 | M +44-(0)7841-781-917 | rachel.veevers@endsleigh.co.uk