Following on from our previous update where Bond Williams reported an uplift of 19% in new job openings for January compared to this time last year, we can also confirm that figures from The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs reveal that permanent placings rose in December (55.5) and the previous month was an even steeper rise (57.1), a seven-month high.
The wages of permanent staff have also continued to grow in December (58.7); Kevin Green, REC CEO, said: “The UK labour market is in great shape at the start of 2016 but some major challenges lie ahead.
“Skill shortages are a real threat to continued growth in many industries. With talent at a premium, employers will try to attract staff by increasing starting salaries. On general wage growth, as many businesses align annual pay rises to the rate of inflation, we anticipate that growth will remain at 1.5 to 2.5%.
“Businesses will need to manage the introduction of the National Living Wage, which will also have a major impact on pay levels. We wait with some trepidation to see the effect it will have on demand for staff, particularly in low-pay sectors such as healthcare.”
Bernard Brown, Partner at KPMG highlights that the rise in recruiting for permanent roles shows a positive shift in businesses’ willingness to invest in their workforce: “Hiring remained slow but steady during December, with businesses and candidates keen to complete negotiations before Christmas. We are beginning to see a shift away from short term, low risk hiring, with demand for permanent staff outpacing that for temporary workers. This indicates businesses’ confidence is steadily solidifying, leading to an increased willingness to make long term investments in their workforce.”