Staff demand on increase as consultancy appointments rise

The
growth of staff appointments hit a two-and-a-half year high in September, the
latest research reveals.

According
to the monthly Report on Jobs, the number of people placed into permanent jobs
by recruitment consultancies rose for the fourth successive month in September,
as did average weekly billings received from the employment of temporary and
contract staff. In both cases the rate of growth was the strongest since
February 2001.

The
report for the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and Deloitte reveals
that rising workloads and improved business confidence were the main factors
underlying strengthening demand. Demand rose markedly for all types of
employees with the exception of temporary executive/professional staff, which
continued to register a marginal decline.

Further
evidence of rising demand for staff was highlighted by an increase in national
press recruitment advertising for a second month in a row in August.

Commenting
on the latest findings, Brett Walsh, head of UK human capital at Deloitte, was
optimistic the study reflected an improvement in economic prospects for UK
employers.

“The
latest Report on Jobs provides welcome news that employment growth is
strengthening as the economic recovery in the UK gathers pace and shows signs
of greater sustainability. However, with the war for talent clearly picking up,
firms are already finding pockets of skill shortages, which if sustained will
add to recruitment difficulties and exert upward pressure on wages and salaries
over the coming months,” he said.

The
Report on Jobs study, based on responses from a panel of 400 UK recruitment and
employment consultancies, also finds that strong demand for staff, coupled with
certain skills shortages, was reported by consultancies to have placed upward
pressure on pay rates in September. The rate of increase of salaries awarded to
people placed in permanent jobs remained modest but nonetheless was the fastest
since June 2002.

www.rec.uk.com

By Ben Willmott

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