Jobs market expands at fastest pace in eight years

Monday 18 November 2013

An encouraging jobs report has been published by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and professional services company KPMG. According to their research, the jobs market is expanding, with strong growth in temporary and permanent positions holding steady. The report also shows salaries have sharply increased following a widespread professional skills shortage.

The REC and KPMG Report on Jobs is considered to be the most comprehensive guide to the national labour market, and is seen as an accurate measurement of employer confidence.

REC chief executive officer Kevin Green, said: “Recruiters are also telling us that the hiring process is starting to pick up speed as employer confidence returns, which should also lead to greater fluidity returning to the jobs market and greater opportunities for those looking to enter the jobs market or make the next step up in their career.” That’s good news for freelancers, as opportunities for work are becoming more numerous and frequent. Demand for both temporary and full-time staff is at its highest since June 2007, in both public and private sectors and across all industries.

Mr Green added that while continued job growth is positive news for workers, it does signal a six year low in availability of staff to fill the large amount of roles available. “The skills shortage shows no signs of abating and although it is starting to drive wages up there is a real danger that it could cause serious damage to future economic growth in the UK,” he said.

Although the skills shortage is driving up wages across the board, some wonder whether higher salaries are enough to entice workers to change jobs. “All the evidence suggests not,” said partner and head of businesses at KPMG, Bernard Brown. To encourage recruitment of highly sought professionals, Mr Brown says employers must offer more than just higher wages. A wide range of benefits and a raft of offers is necessary to entice top talent.

If you are considering taking advantage of the current climate of the jobs market, the professional accountants at Brookson will help ensure your job switch or career change goes smoothly, particularly with regards to freelance and contracted employment. Specialist advisors are available to help you maximise your profits whilst enjoying all the benefits of going freelance.

At the moment, temporary and contract staff are most likely to find roles in engineering, and IT professionals are also in high demand. These two categories are also showing the highest rate of growth in permanent staff positions. In contrast, the slowest growth in both contract and permanent jobs was recorded in the executive and professional sector. Although job rates are increasing across the entire UK, the Midlands is currently showing the strongest growth in temporary and permanent roles, while the slowest rate of expansion is in London.

The private sector is showing stronger growth than the public sector, with demand for permanent staff increasing at a higher rate than temporary and contract workers. Meanwhile, the REC and KPMG jobs report suggests temporary and contract workers are highly sought in the public sector, even more so than permanent employees.

By Victoria McDonnell

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