hospitality sector – that they are struggling to recruit staff. It also queried recent figures from the Office for National Statistics that show upward pressure on pay, which suggested earnings had risen 5.6% in the three months between February and April 2021 compared with the same period in 2020. It said this was a “compositional effect as lower-paid workers dropped out of the workforce and the base effects of the deep economic shock last year”, rather than a strong uptick in pay. Recent data analyses from Incomes Data Research and XpertHR suggest that average pay rises are more like 2%, just under the consumer prices index rate of inflation, which is 2.1%. One of the issues facing hospitality employers is the speed with which they reopened from an “almost complete stanA think tank has warned of ‘dangerous complacency’ as the government prepares to scale back its Job Retention Scheme from Thursday 1 July. Resolution Foundation research published today (28 June) found that total hours worked in the UK economy are still about 7% below what they were pre-pandemic, with the organisation claiming that the labour market is not as tight as many employers make out.