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Reports on occupational coding confirm accuracy of Graduate Outcomes statistics

Two reports on the use of ONS Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) in Graduate Outcomes review the quality assurance process for 2018/19 and verify the application of the updated coding system using 2017/18 data.

The summary of SOC coding assurance for the second year of the Graduate Outcomes survey reveals that there were 3048 queries received from HE providers about the SOC codes assigned to graduates’ jobs. From these queries systemic issues were found with the coding of 12 occupation groups and a further 30 groups were found to have been coded inconsistently. 95.5% of queries were deemed non-systemic or not actionable:

Read Graduate Outcomes - A Summary of the Year Two SOC Coding Assurance

One strand of quality assurance is the independent verification of coded occupational data. An exercise was carried out to compare codes returned by the primary coder for Graduate Outcomes with those returned by an independent organisation to validate HESA’s approach to coding and the outputs that follow. Independent coding of occupations by the Office for National Statistics found ‘almost perfect’ alignment between coders at the major-group level:

Read Graduate Outcomes SOC coding – Independent Verification Analysis Report 

Results of the 2018/19 Graduate Outcomes survey will be published in July 2021. An ad-hoc statistical bulletin showing comparisons between SOC 2010 and SOC 2020 for 2017/18 graduates will be published on 20 May. 


Press Officer