UK recruitment market picking up

Nov 07 2003 by Brian Amble Print This Article

Demand for staff by employers increased in October at the sharpest rate since February 2001, pushing up pay at the fastest rates for three years and revealing pockets of skills shortages.

The latest Deloitte and Touche/Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) Report on Jobs points to a ‘significant improvement’ in the UK recruitment market, with the number of permanent staff placements and temporary staff billings both rising markedly, and at accelerating rates.

With overall staff availability improving only marginally, the pay awarded to people placed in permanent jobs and temporary staff both enjoyed their fourth month of growth and rose at the fastest rates for some three years.

Brett Walsh, Head of UK Human Capital at Deloitte said that the report painted a favourable picture of the UK recruitment market.

“The number of staff appointments by recruitment consultancies are currently running at levels not seen for three years,” he said, “whilst private sector employment rose for the third successive month. However, employers are now starting to feel the cost implications of emerging skill shortages, which resulted in a marked increase in wages and salaries."

The availability of staff in hospitality and driving is causing particular concern to agencies, but other areas causing recruitment problems are IT skills, secretarial and clerical staff, nurses, care workers, chefs, receptionist and telesales.

Recruiters largely attributed strengthened demand for staff to rising workloads and improved business confidence at clients.