Companies appear to be putting concerns over high inflation to one side when it comes to their recruitment plans, with job adverts remaining at consistently high levels.
In the week of the 6th-12th March there were 205,947 new job postings, 1.5% higher than the week before, according to the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) and Lightcast’s latest Labour Market Tracker.
Across the UK, three out of the top 10 hiring spots for the week of 6th-12th March were in London: Lambeth (+12.8%), Redbridge and Waltham Forest (+9.9%), Lewisham and Southwark (+9.8%). Other areas which saw notable increases in job adverts in the time period were Gwynedd (+13%), Berkshire (+11%) and Highland (+11%).
On the other hand, North Lanarkshire (-8.8%) saw the largest decline in job adverts, followed by Torbay (-2.7%), Isle of Wight (-1.7%), Northumberland (-1.5%), and Inverclyde, East Renfrewshire and Renfrewshire (-1.4%).
The number of active postings in this time period saw an even greater increase, with a 5% jump to 1,447,095. The number of active job adverts has been stable around and above 1.4 million since the beginning of 2022, reflecting the high demand from employers.
Occupations with notable increases in job adverts in the week of 6-12 Mar 2023 include clergy (+17.6%), plasterers (+13.6%), financial and accounting technicians (+12.9%), archivists and curators (+12.6%), secondary education teaching professionals (+12.6%), production managers and directors in construction (+11.7%), and scaffolders, stagers and riggers (+11.5%).
On the other hand, postal workers, mail sorters, messengers and couriers (-12.3%), roundspersons and van salespersons (-6.2%), precision instrument makers and repairers (-0.2%), telecommunications engineers (+0.1%), and dental nurses (+0.4%) saw the biggest weekly decline or slowest growth in job adverts.
Reflecting on the data, Neil Carberry, chief executive of the REC, said: “This new job ads data shows stability in employer demand for staff. The labour market is not surging, as it did for much of 2022, but it remains a good time to be looking for a job. Firms still need to hire and there are plenty of opportunities out there.
“There is nothing in this data that suggests that labour and skills shortages are going away soon, so companies need to adapt their hiring plans to match that. A focus on reaching into different communities, skill development and staff engagement is likely to pay off. Across the country, the best firms are working with their recruiters on this.
“There is much the government can do, too. The Budget started to focus in the right areas on childcare and support to work, but there is a lot to do if these plans are to really make a difference. And the Budget got an F from business on skills – the current system in England actively discourages employer investment and it needs to change.
“A double-digit percentage rise in the past few weeks to nearly 40,000 nursery, primary and secondary job vacancies shows the scale of the issues with pay, workload and conditions of service among teachers. Schools are increasingly struggling to hire as the impact of several years of below-target initial recruitment plays out.”
Elena Magrini, head of global research, Lightcast, added: “The number of new online postings has stabilised in recent weeks. Compared to the fast growth seen in 2021 and the first half of 2022, the line is flattening. This shows that recruitment activity is no longer growing, which could be an early indication of the labour market cooling. However, the fact that the market is cooling and not declining in times of such uncertainty and high inflation suggests that the current economic outlook has not yet impacted negatively recruitment activity.”
These maps were created by Polimapper. To find out more, visit polimapper.co.uk