The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies.
Modest growth of permanent placements maintained...
Permanent staff placements increased in April, continuing the trend seen since the start of 2012. That said, the rate of growth was modest and the slowest since January. Higher placements were supported by a further solid increase in demand for staff.
...but temp billings show further slight fall
Agencies’ billings from the employment of temporary/contract staff fell again in April. Although only slight, the rate of contraction was nevertheless the fastest since July 2009. The number of vacancies available to people seeking short-term work meanwhile increased, but at the weakest rate since September 2009.
Permanent staff availability down slightly; weaker rise in temp availability
April data pointed to a slight deterioration in the availability of candidates for permanent jobs, bringing an end to the previous 14-month sequence of growth. Temporary/contract staff availability continued to rise, albeit at the weakest rate for almost a year.
Salaries broadly stagnant
Permanent staff salaries continued to show a broadly flat trend in April, posting a fractional fall on the month. Hourly rates of pay for temporary/contract staff were up modestly
Kevin Green, Chief Executive of the Recruitment & Employment Confederation, says: “This month’s figures show growth in permanent jobs but at the slowest level since January. This highlights the fragile nature of the UK jobs market at present. Employer and consumer confidence are increasing and we anticipate more private sector jobs being created in the second half of the year. Temporary staffing is declining as employers take on more permanent staff and come to terms with the Agency Workers Regulations, however, temps will continue to be a valuable resource for many businesses.
“During 2011, employers made do with the staff they had, trying to exploit any additional capacity in their existing workforce. Having maximised the growth they could achieve in this way, confidence has grown sufficiently for organisations to make the positive decision to take on more staff.
"This growth is fragile though, and reports of a double dip recession and crises in the Eurozone could have a negative impact on that confidence.”
Bernard Brown, Partner and Head of Business Services at KPMG,comments: “The job market mirrors the frustration of April showers spilling into May. At first glance it is encouraging to see permanent job opportunities continue to improve, but there has also been a sharper decline in temporary placements.
“One ray of sunshine amidst the gloom is the Midlands, where engineering and construction opportunities have grown for the past six months.
“With the recent economic data in the UK and continued global economic uncertainties, the situation is unlikely to improve. Unemployment rates are likely to continue to rise in the short term. The question, now, is whether we start to push the 3m mark.”
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Note to Editors:
The Report on Jobs is a monthly publication produced by Markit on behalf of the Recruitment & Employment Confederation and KPMG. The report features original survey data which provide the most up-to-date and comprehensive monthly picture of recruitment, employment and employee earnings trends available.
The Report features original research data from Markit, collected via questionnaire from a panel of 400 UK recruitment and employment consultancies. In 2010/11, some 1,049,333 people were employed in either temporary or contract work through consultancies and 604,193 people were placed in permanent positions through consultancies. Data for the monthly survey were first collected in October 1997 and are collected at the end of each month, with respondents asked to specify the direction of change in a number of survey variables.
All Index numbers are calculated from the percentages of respondents reporting an improvement, no change or decline. These indices vary between 0 and 100 with reading of exactly 50.0 signalling no change on the previous month. Readings above 50 signal an increase or improvement; readings below 50 signal a decline or deterioration. Reasons given by survey respondents for any changes are analysed to provide insight into the causes of movements in the indices and are also used to adjust for expected seasonal variations.
Markit do not revise underlying survey data after first publication, but seasonal adjustment factors may be revised from time to time as appropriate which will affect the seasonally adjusted data series. Historical data relating to the underlying (unadjusted) numbers, first published seasonally adjusted series and subsequently revised data are available to subscribers from Markit. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
A regional Report on Jobs series is now available comprising four regional reports tracking labour market trends across the Midlands, the North of England, the South of England and London. The reports are designed to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date guide to labour market trends and the data are directly comparable with the UK Report on Jobs.
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Recruitment and Employment Confederation
15 Welbeck Street, London, W1G 9XT. Tel: 020 7009 2100. Fax: 0207 935 4112 Website: www.rec.uk.com
The REC is the professional body representing the UK’s £24.6 billion private recruitment and staffing industry with more than 8,000 recruitment agencies and 6,000 recruitment consultants in membership. There are more than 1 million temporary workers registered with UK agencies who are deployed in industry, commerce and the public services every day.
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