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A survey of the opinions of recent veterinary graduates and employers regarding early career business skills
  1. E. A. Bachynsky, BVetMed/DVM MRCVS1,2,
  2. V. H. M. Dale, BSc MSc FHEA PhD1,3,
  3. T. Kinnison, BSc MSc1,
  4. J. Gazzard, BSc PhD MBA PgCert (Vet Ed) FHEA1,4 and
  5. S. Baillie, BSc BVSc PhD FHEA MRCVS1,5
  1. 1The Royal Veterinary College, Hawkshead Lane, North Mymms, Hatfield, Hertfordshire AL9 7TA, UK
  2. 2Westside Veterinary Hospital, 6034 West Broadway, Pearland, Texas 77581, USA
  3. 3E-Learning Environments, University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT
  4. 4University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7TJ
  5. 5The School of Veterinary Sciences, University of Bristol, Langford House, Langford, Bristol, BS40 5DU
  1. E-mail for correspondence: tkinnison{at}rvc.ac.uk

Abstract

A questionnaire was designed to assess recent veterinary graduates' proficiency in early career business skills, from the perspectives of graduates of 2006–2008 and employers of recent graduates in the UK. Recent graduates perceived themselves to be generally more competent in financial matters than employers considered them to be. However, when specific skills were assessed, graduates felt less prepared than employers considered them to be competent. Overall, graduates and employers rated recent graduates' preparedness/competence as poor to average for all skills, which were regarded as having average to high importance. Both groups commented on the difficulties faced by new graduates in terms of client communication (generally and financially), and having the confidence to charge clients appropriately for veterinary services. The results of this study indicate that veterinary schools need to take a more active role in the teaching of basic finance skills in order to equip graduates with essential early career competencies. It is anticipated that the information reported will help inform undergraduate curriculum development and highlight the need for increased training at the continuing education level.

  • Veterinary profession
  • Surveys
  • Education
  • Recent graduates
  • Employers
  • Business Skills

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