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  • Benchmarks: Staffing, Students Per Professional

    June 14, 2017 | By NACE Staff

    Organizational Structure
    Career Services professionals discuss their operations.

    TAGS: operations, surveys, benchmarks, spotlight

    Spotlight for Career Services Professionals

    Director is the most common staff position among career services operations, according to results of NACE’s 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities.

    More than 92 percent of respondents reported they had a director on staff, by far the most represented staff position among respondents. Other staff positions that were common among career services operations were student worker (75.1 percent), administrative assistant (64.8 percent), and career counselor (52.3 percent). Career information coordinators were the least common among staff (4.2 percent).

    The staff structure of career services operations fluctuated by Carnegie Classification. (See Figure 1.) Director positions were most common among Doctoral, Master’s, and Baccalaureate institutions, while less than 70 percent of Associate’s institutions featured a director position. This finding coincides with last year’s report and is not surprising, as these smaller-scale operations are generally managed by a larger division.

    Staff at Doctoral institutions were more inclined to feature a wider variation of positions, such as associate directors, assistant directors, administrative assistants, graduate assistants, and four types of coordinators—internship, marketing, recruiting, and technology.

    Staff size fluctuated by Carnegie Classification, with Doctoral institutions housing the greatest number of staff members, especially among R1 and R2 institutions. (See Figure 2.)

    The number of students per professional staff member was calculated by dividing an institution’s total number of full-time and part-time students by the number of full-time and part-time professional staff. Overall, the average and median number of students per professional staff member decreased a little since last year, but stayed relatively proportionate. (See Figure 3.)

    By Carnegie Classification, the highest ratios were among R1, R2 institutions, and, in particular, Associate’s institutions. (See Figure 4.)

    Data were collected for the 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities from September 30, 2016, to January 20, 2017, from NACE member institutions; there were 705 respondents, representing 35.3 percent of all eligible respondents. Highlights from the 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Report for Colleges and Universities are available on NACEWeb. Participating members can access the full report through MyNACE.

    Figure 1: Staff composition, by Carnegie Classification

    Position Overall Doctoral Master’s Baccalaureate Associate’s
    R1 R2 R3 M1 M2 M3 A&S Diverse  
    Director 92.1% 95.3% 94.3% 97.0% 96.4% 93.8% 92.3% 97.1% 95.2% 68.6%
    Associate Director 35.5% 76.5% 58.5% 57.6% 30.7% 21.9% 23.1% 40.6% 9.5% 3.9%
    Assistant Director 47.0% 72.9% 75.5% 69.7% 46.0% 45.3% 23.1% 59.4% 21.4% 9.8%
    Career Counselor 52.3% 68.2% 69.8% 57.6% 59.1% 37.5% 34.6% 33.3% 23.8% 60.8%
    Career Information Coordinator 4.2% 5.9% 3.8% 0.0% 3.6% 4.7% 0.0% 1.4% 2.4% 9.8%
    Internship Coordinator 24.6% 30.6% 30.2% 27.3% 24.1% 17.2% 19.2% 26.1% 19.0% 23.5%
    Marketing Coordinator 17.6% 51.8% 34.0% 27.3% 6.6% 9.4% 3.8% 11.6% 0.0% 5.9%
    Recruiting Coordinator 39.3% 76.5% 67.9% 45.5% 31.4% 23.4% 15.4% 39.1% 7.1% 23.5%
    Technology Coordinator 13.4% 30.6% 30.2% 9.1% 11.7% 4.7% 0.0% 13.0% 0.0% 7.8%
    Administrative Assistant 64.8% 82.4% 83.0% 78.8% 63.5% 50.0% 61.5% 68.1% 42.9% 60.8%
    Graduate Assistant 39.6% 63.5% 67.9% 57.6% 52.6% 34.4% 42.3% 23.2% 7.1% 7.8%
    Student Worker 75.1% 88.2% 83.0% 87.9% 77.4% 73.4% 80.8% 79.7% 57.1% 66.7%
    Source: 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities, National Association of Colleges and Employers

    Figure 2: Staff size, by Carnegie Classification

      Doctoral Master’s Baccalaureate Associate’s
    R1 R2 R3 M1 M2 M3 A&S Diverse  
    Number of FTE
    total staff members
    Percentile 25 8 5 4 3 2 1 2 1 1
    Mean 14 9 8 6 5 3 5 2 4
    Median 12 8 6 4 3 2 4 2 2
    Percentile 75 19 11 10 7 5 3 6 3 5
    Number of FTE
    professional staff members
    Percentile 25 6 4 3 2 2 1 2 1 1
    Mean 12 8 7 5 4 2 4 2 3
    Median 10 7 5 3 2 2 3 1 2
    Percentile 75 16 10 8 6 4 3 5 2 4
    Number of FTE
    administrative assistants
    Percentile 25 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Mean 2 1 1 1 1 0 1 0 1
    Median 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0
    Percentile 75 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
    Source: 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities, National Association of Colleges and Employers

    Figure 3: Number of students per professional staff

    Year Mean Median
    2016 2,917 1,765
    2015 3,179 1,789
    2014 2,672 1,674
    2013 2,370 1,487
    2012 1,889 1,157
    2011 1,645 859
    Source: 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities, National Association of Colleges and Employers

    Figure 4: Students per professional staff, by Carnegie Classification

      Doctoral Master’s Baccalaureate Associate’s
    R1 R2 R3 M1 M2 M3 A&S Diverse  
    Number of students
    per staff
    member
    Percentile 25 1,640 1,552 1,201 1,504 782 1,157 339 753 1,857
    Mean 4,632 3,076 2,694 2,971 2,343 2,021 567 1,689 6,068
    Median 2,925 1,960 1,935 2,002 1,589 1,788 490 1,272 3,783
    Percentile 75 5,411 4,138 3,671 3,301 2,231 2,268 710 1,962 6,418
    Source: 2016-17 Career Services Benchmark Survey Report for Colleges and Universities, National Association of Colleges and Employers
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