Shades of grey: Understanding job quality in emerging graduate occupations

Okay-Somerville, B. and Scholarios, D. (2013) Shades of grey: Understanding job quality in emerging graduate occupations. Human Relations, 66(4), pp. 555-585. (doi: 10.1177/0018726712465094)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.


This article examines job quality for university graduates employed in intermediately skilled (emerging) and traditional graduate occupations. Skills policies largely assume that increasing the supply of skilled labour generates sufficient demand in terms of appropriate jobs, but job quality in emerging occupations and the effects on graduates’ attitudes and well-being have yet to be established. The role of job quality (defined in terms of skills use, job content, job security and pay) was examined in a sample drawn from the 2006 UK Skills Survey. Graduates in emerging occupations reported lower use of ‘graduateness’ skills, job control, opportunities for skill use and pay. In turn, job quality explained lower job satisfaction and organizational commitment. The defining features of a ‘good’ graduate job related to intrinsic job content. The findings highlight the importance of employer practices and skills policies that better utilize and develop the highly skilled workforce.

Item Type:Articles (Other)
Keywords:Graduates, intermediate occupations, job quality, skills survey 2006, well-being, attitudes.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Scholarios, Prof Dora and Okay-Somerville, Dr Belgin
Authors: Okay-Somerville, B., and Scholarios, D.
Subjects:B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
College/School:College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Research Group:Human Resource Management & Organisational Behaviour
Journal Name:Human Relations
Publisher:SAGE Publications
ISSN (Online):1741-282X

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record