General information on ranking

Name of the ranking QS Graduate Employability Rankings
Geographical scope Global
Name of person in charge of ranking Ben Sowter
E-mail of person in charge of ranking
Website of the ranking
Publication frequency annual
First year of publication 2015
Most recent year of publication 2022
Date of last update 2023-07-12
Ranking organization Quacquarelli Symonds Ltd (QS)
Website of the methodology

The QS Graduate Employability Rankings is an annual ranking of universities around the world, celebrating institutions which are committed to and effective in preparing students for the workplace. It is designed to provide the world’s students with a unique tool by which they can compare university performance in terms of graduate employability outcomes and prospects. Each institution’s total score is compiled based on the following five indicators.

Employer reputation (30%)

The Employer Reputation metric is based on over 75,000 responses to the QS Employer Survey, and asks employers to identify those institutions from which they source the most competent, innovative, effective graduates. 

Alumni outcomes (25%)

To assess alumni outcomes, QS has sourced the alma maters of those individuals featuring in over 220 high-achievers lists, each measuring desirable outcomes in a particular walk of life. In total, QS analyzed the educational pathways of more than  40,000 of the world’s most innovative, creative, wealthy, entrepreneurial, and/or philanthropic individuals to establish which universities are producing world-changing graduates. A higher weighting is applied to those individuals featured in lists focused on younger profiles, to ensure a high level of contemporary relevance. Likewise, undergraduate degrees have a higher weighting than post-graduate degrees, as it is assumed that the early stages of the higher education learning process are more formative in establishing an individual’s employability.

Partnerships with Employers per Faculty (25%)

This indicator comprises two parts. First, it uses Elsevier’s Scopus database to establish which universities are collaborating successfully with global companies to produce citable, transformative research. Only distinct companies producing two or more collaborative papers in a five-year period (2015-2019) are included in the count. This year’s ranking accounts for university collaborations with 2,000 top global companies, as listed by Fortune and Forbes. Second, it considers work placement-related partnerships that are reported by institutions and validated by the QS research team. Both figures are adjusted to account for the number of faculty at each university, and then combined into a composite index.

Employer/Student Connections (10%)

This indicator involves summing the number of individual employers who have been  actively present on a university’s campus over the past twelve months, providing motivated students with an opportunity to network and acquire information. Employer presence also increases the opportunitiesthat students have to participate in career-launching internships and research opportunities. This ‘active presence’ may take the form of participating in careers fairs, organizing company presentations, or any other self-promoting activities. This count is adjusted by the number of students, accounting for the size of each institution.

Graduate employment rate (10%)

This indicator is essential for any understanding of how successful universities are at nurturing employability. It involves measuring the proportion of graduates (excluding those opting to pursue further study or unavailable to work) in full- or part-time employment within 12 months of graduation. The scores in this category are calculated by considering the difference between each institution’s employment rate and the national average. To preclude significant anomalies, the results are adjusted by the range between the maximum and minimum values recorded in each country or region. This accounts for the fact that a university’s ability to foster employability will be affected by the economic performance of the country in which it is situated.           

Additional information

  • Type of publication: internet, print - special publication
  • Internet users access to ranking: open access
  • Language of publication: English
  • Main target groups: employers, higher education institutions, policymakers, governments and funding agencies, students and parents
  • Level of comparison: institutional: 550
  • Major dimensions covered: employability, reputation
  • Structure of presentation: ordinary presentation (league tables)
  • Data sources: survey conducted exclusively by ranking organization, third-party database (data not provided by HEI)
  • Quality assurance of ranking: advisory board
  • Website of the ranking organization:
  • Types of the ranking organization: commercial/for-profit (incl. media)
  • Types of rankings: global-sub