This is according to a new survey carried out by ICM Research, which conducted online interviews with 500 major English companies in February and asked them to rate the employability of people with various qualifications on a scale of one to ten.
It was revealed apprentices are 15 per cent more suited to a role than many other applicants, with higher, degree-level apprenticeships deemed the most desirable, receiving a score of 7.36 out of ten.
Meanwhile, those with university degrees were rated at 7.58, while the average for all other qualifications was 6.382.
Large firms like British Airways, PwC, Unilever and the UK Space Agency are involved in a nationwide apprenticeship scheme that allows participants to undertake degree-level study at the same time as getting paid.
PwC claimed it recruited approximately 100 school leavers last year and has plans to take on a further 70 higher apprentices this year.
Skills minister Matthew Hancock stated the government is looking for apprenticeships and university to become the new norm for young people leaving school, with higher apprenticeships in particular standing out as an excellent way to enter high-profile careers.
In 2012, the coalition provided funding for 4,230 placements in the second round of its £25 million higher apprenticeships initiative. This year, the apprenticeships will be available in a total of 41 subjects, such as interactive media, engineering environment technologies, legal services and space engineering.
David Way, executive director of the National Apprenticeship Service, said it is accepted that apprenticeships can deliver real business benefits for employers.
“At the same time, they can provide young people with a nationally recognised work-based route into professions that have traditionally been the preserve of graduates,” he added.
This comes after business secretary Vince Cable promised last year the government would be looking to help boost equality and diversity in the workplace by tackling skills shortages and increasing participation by under-represented groups.