More companies plan to recruit

The
number of companies planning to recruit staff in the first four months of the
year has increased by 5 per cent, compared to the same time 12 months ago.

The
latest figures from the Reed Recruitment Index also show that fewer firms plan to
make redundancies, with just 8 per cent planning to downsize, compared to 10
per cent last year.

More
than 1,400 organisations were involved in the survey which found that 37 per
cent would be recruiting during the first quarter, up from 32 per cent in 2002.

Planned
growth is highest in large companies, with 43 per cent of those employing more
than 1,000 people planning to recruit new staff.

The
picture is less positive for small firms with less than 100 staff, although 36
per cent are still planning workforce growth.

Organisations
in the UK are still suffering skills shortages with sales staff the most in
demand at 17 per cent, a rise of two per cent from 2002.

Other
skills shortages included technical/engineering staff (15 per cent),
accountants (14 per cent), caterers (12 per cent) and secretarial (11 per cent).

By Quentin Reade

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