Companies across the U.S. are in a battle for top talent. With unemployment at just 3.8 percent, employers are being forced to up their game and spend more time and resources making their organizations attractive to potential employees.
This tight labor market also makes members of the Class of 2018 who studied business, engineering and computer science particularly attractive to employers and the companies that students with these skills most admire have a serious competitive advantage.
Employer branding consultancy Universum surveyed over 62,000 college students and found that a handful of companies stand out as being the most attractive. But which companies come out on top depends on the industry.
Here are the 10 most attractive companies for business majors:
9. Goldman Sachs
7. Ernst & Young
6. J.P. Morgan
2. Walt Disney Company
Here are the 10 most attractive companies for engineering majors:
9. General Electric
8. Walt Disney Company
6. Lockheed Martin Corporation
Here are the 10 most attractive companies for computer science majors:
10. Blizzard Entertainment
Google dominated each of these lists, earning a first-place ranking among business and computer science majors as well as a fourth-place ranking among engineers.
While traditionally-popular tech companies like Apple, Amazon and Facebook maintain their attractive reputations as employers, one of the most significant findings from Universum's survey was a resurgence in the popularity of financial companies.
"Wall Street is making huge investments in technology and increasing the volume of early career hires for technology positions," says Vicki Lynn, Senior Vice President at Universum. "The banks are building tech incubators and innovation hubs like JPMorgan's Financial Solutions Lab, a $30 million five-year initiative. These incubators foster collaboration and attract creative engineering and computer science talent for fintech innovations and the development of new digital investment products."
A prime example of this is Ernst & Young. The professional and financial services company was found to be the number one most attractive company for accounting majors and the seventh most attractive for business majors.
Ken Bouyer, Director of Inclusiveness Recruiting at EY, says that gaining the renewed interest of younger workers did not happen overnight.
"Our recruiters spend an incredible amount of time on campuses and frankly with students," he tells CNBC Make It. "Even in a tight labor market, when you are consistent, when you have a strong brand and more importantly when you have great opportunities for people, you're still going to attract more than your fair share of applicants."
The improved perception of companies on Wall Street is also part of a larger trend, says Jonna Sjövall, Managing Director for Universum Americas. Sjövall explains that as the demand for labor increases and companies improve their offerings to employees, workers are increasingly open about the kinds of opportunities they will consider.
The most distinct characteristic of the youngest generation of workers is an emphasis on work-life balance, she says.
"We see this as a by-product of a healthy economy and strong job market inspiring student confidence," she explains. "Students are considering more companies across a wider array of industries. They simply have more options today and are zooming on finding that work-life balance — which to them means flexibility, freedom and transparency."
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