Recruitment to increase as emloyers gain confidence

Recruitment activity is set to rise for the fourth quarter in a row, and
more than half of employers expect the size of their workforce to increase.

The latest research from the Recruitment Confidence Index also shows that 23
per cent of employers say the number of unfilled vacancies will go up over the
next six months.

However, employers appear to be worryingly relaxed about how they will fill
these vacancies. They are not planning an increase in recruitment spend, nor
are they predicting a severe skills shortage. Although 38 per cent are planning
to increase their spending on commercial recruitment websites and 31 per cent
say they will increase their spending on employment agencies, recruitment spend
is largely set to remain the same.

Commenting on the results, professor Shaun Tyson from Cranfield School of
Management said: "All the indicators this quarter point to increasing
demand for labour. The question is, will the supply of labour be readily
available, especially in the ‘hot spots’ of the South East of England?

"The imminent expansion of the European Union does have the potential
to fill some of these jobs, but it is unlikely to have a dramatic impact
immediately," Tyson added. "Rising labour costs could see jobs going
the other way, and moving out of the UK to elsewhere in Europe."

Stephanie Richards, recruitment research manager at the Daily Telegraph,
said: "The challenge facing employers is whether they are prepared for the
pending hike in vacancies. If they intend to rely on the existing supply of
labour, as seems to be the case, they will need to think seriously about how
they use reward packages to attract, retain and motivate staff."

A full report on the Recruitment Confidence Index will appear in the June
issue of Recruitment Trends and Forecasts. Subscription information: 020 8652

Quentin Reade

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