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Report on Jobs - April 2016

25/05/16 Adam Walker Director

The latest figures from Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s (REC) ‘Report on Jobs’ reveals contrasting activity in April between the UK’s permanent and temporary markets. UK Recruitment Consultancies indicated a further rise in the number of people placed in permanent jobs during April 2016. However, the rate of growth eased to a seven-month low amid reports of increased client uncertainty. Correspondingly, growth of permanent staff vacancies was the slowest since May 2013.

Key Points:

• Permanent placements growth weakest since September 2015
• Contract/Temporary billings rise at fastest pace in four months
• Vacancy growth eases to 33-month low
• Strongest rate of growth in Executive/Professional and Accounting/Financial sectors
Permanent Staff

The number of people placed in permanent jobs increased further during March. That said, the rate of expansion eased to a seven-month low. It is reported that tight candidate availability had restricted growth of permanent staff appointments.

All four monitored English regions saw higher levels of permanent placements. The strongest growth was signalled in the North, while the slowest rate was reported in London.
Demand rose for all nine types of permanent staff in March. The strongest rate of growth was indicated for Executive/Professional and Accounting /Financial workers, while the Engineering and Technical sector rose in comparison to March where it was indicated at its weakest growth.

Temporary/Contract Staff

Agency billings from the employment of temporary/contract staff continued to rise in March. The rate of expansion quickened to a four-month high and was marked overall. Rising client activity levels were commonly reported by panellists noting an increase in temp billings.
Growth of Temporary and Contract billings was broad-based across the English regions, with the Midlands posting the sharpest increase.

Broad-based growth of demand for staff was reported in March, with the weakest growth indicated for Executive/Professional and Engineering employees.

There is no surprise in the lack of growth for engineering employees considering earlier this month, James Dyson – CEO of Dyson warned that the UK is heading for ‘economic suicide’ as the take up rate for jobs in engineering is plummeting. Philip Greenish – Chief Executive of the Royal Academy of Engineering, commented: “Engineering accounts for 25% of gross value added for the UK economy and manufactured goods account for some 50% of UK exports.” However, considering a weak demand in engineering jobs, recent figures from the Royal Academy of Engineering claimed there is still a shortfall of 1.8 million engineers across the UK.

Slowest rise in vacancies since June 2013

March data pointed to softer growth of demand for staff. The latest increase in overall vacancy numbers was the least marked for 33 months. Both permanent and temporary staff saw weaker rates of growth.

Skills in short supply

It is evident that a short supply in skills across numerous sectors is still present. Statistics have suggested a rise in permanent staff skills shortages in the following professions:

Accountancy/Financial: Accountancy, Audit, Compliance, Credit, Finance, Para-planners, Risk, Security, Treasury
Engineering: Engineers, Structural Design and Electrical
Executive/ Professional: Advertising, Business Development, HR, Marketing, Media
IT/Computing: Analysts, C++, Cisco, Cyber Security. Developers, Digital Marketing, Embedded Software, Java, Project Managers

There are a range of factors that contribute to the current skills shortage in engineering, including poor perceptions and the lack of interest in engineering jobs; low attainment and progression in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects at school.

Adam Walker, Redline Group Director Comments: “Britain’s engineering industry is driving productivity but a skills shortage is still large enough to trigger widespread concern for the long-term future of UK engineering. It is evident that not enough young people are making engineering their career choice and we can see engineering talent is being lost to professions such as consultancy and accounting. However, with the advances in technology forming an even greater role in everyday life, professions in areas such as Technical Management, Electronic Design and Development jobs including Hardware – FPGA, Analog, ASIC, silicon & EDA and Software engineering continue to rise.”

Redline Group is a specialist recruitment consultancy sourcing and selecting professional & qualified Management, Technical and Sales staff for the European technology market. They provide recruitment, retention and management advice, and expertise to assist technology companies in identifying and developing the best talent for their organisations.

For more in-depth information about recruitment solutions in the high-technology jobs arena, please contact Adam Walker on 01582 878802 or via email at