agrlogoThe Chief Executive of the Association of Graduate Recruiters, Carl Gilleard, today (Monday 30 November) announced the organisation’s plans for 2010. Speaking to AGR members at the Annual General Meeting in London he outlined his vision against the backdrop of a ‘challenging year ahead’ in the HR sector.

He stressed that despite the difficult economic conditions there was now ‘a sense of optimism returning to the HR sector’, and that this optimism has been reflected in the AGR’s plans for 2009/10.

He announced that the AGR is going to be consulted by the government on a range of issues including graduate unemployment, measuring and recording student achievement and tuition fees. “This is a fantastic opportunity for the AGR and its members,” he said, “and means that we will be able to lead the debate surrounding the extremely important issues that affect graduates and the graduate employment market.”

The AGR will be extending its research work internationally in 2010. In addition to its leading bi-annual surveys of the graduate recruitment market in the UK, AGR is developing a new research initiative with INGRADA (The International Network of Graduate Recruitment and Development Associations) which will compare graduate vacancies, salaries and retention levels in the UK, US, Canada, Australia, South Africa and Hong Kong.

The AGR also announced plans to publish at least six major new briefing papers for graduate recruiters in 2009/10 on topics such as technology, work permits, staff motivation and marketing. The briefing papers are free to all AGR members.

Finally it was announced that Helen Bostock, the AGR’s Vice President, is standing down form her role because of commercial business interests. Helen joined the Board in 2004 and was made a vice president in 2006. Ruth Chandler, Head of Graduate Talent for Standard Life, was also elected to the board.

The AGR’s 40th anniversary year in 2008/9 saw membership levels reach an all-time high of 853 employers. The annual conference in July 2008 was the largest in its history and the AGR hosted a total of 77 networking events for its members across the country.