Report on UK Jobs – September 2013


The Report on Jobs is unique in providing the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies and employers to provide the first indication each month of labour market trends.

The main findings for September are:

Strong growth of staff appointments maintained…

Recruitment consultants signalled a further substantial rise in permanent staff placements during September. The pace of expansion was only slightly slower than July’s 40-month high. Temp billings similarly increased at a sharp rate, with growth close to the 15-year high seen in August.

…supported by marked expansion of vacancies

Demand for staff continued to increase strongly in September. Growth of job vacancies was at a similar pace to that recorded in August, which was the fastest for over six years.

Candidate availability continues to fall…

September data indicated a further reduction in the availability of candidates. Solid rates of decline were indicated for both permanent and temporary staff availability.

…contributing to further increase in pay rates

Permanent salary inflation quickened slightly in September, reaching its sharpest rate since February 2008. Temp pay inflation also accelerated, with the latest rise only marginally slower than July’s five-and-a-half year high.

Commenting on the latest survey results, Bernard Brown, Partner and Head of Business Services at KPMG, said:

“With another month of data showcasing a strong rise in the number of appointments and job offers on the table, it seems that business is warming to calls for investment from Mark Carney. Improved market conditions, higher activity levels amongst clients and generally stronger levels of confidence amongst employers are certainly one of the major factors underpinning the latest rise in placements.

“Only last week the Bank of England argued that recovery will only be sustainable over the long term if regions beyond London grow strongly. Against this backdrop it is also welcome news to see permanent placements increase across the whole country. The North is showing strongest growth, with the Midlands driving a rise in temporary placements. It’s a sign that local economies are picking up and gives hope that economic recovery is not dependent on one area or sector.

“Yet it remains worrying that employees are clearly still not sharing employers’ growing faith in recovery. Demand for staff may be up, but the number of individuals putting themselves on the market has dropped for the fifth consecutive month. Perhaps the pay on offer has to rise to encourage staff to ‘make the move’. If it doesn’t we could be about to witness a growing gap between what the employers need and what employees are prepared to do.”

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