Report on Jobs: Growing business confidence drives permanent hiring activity.

Carl Wright
by Carl Wright

Report on Jobs: Permanent hiring activity continues to grow.

The latest KPMG and REC, UK Report on Jobs survey signalled a further steep increase in permanent hiring activity during November, as improved business confidence led to employers ramping up their recruitment plans.

Robust demand for workers and efforts to fill vacancies drove a further strong increase in permanent placements.  

At the same time, there was a slower, but still substantial, drop-in overall candidate supply. A notable imbalance between the supply and demand for workers led to further increases in starting pay. Notably, the rate of starting salary inflation hit a fresh series record in November.  

The report compiled by IHS Markit from responses to questionnaires sent to a panel of around 400 UK recruitment consultancies, including Technical Moves.

Key findings and Summary :

Steeper increase in permanent staff appointments

Robust demand for workers and efforts to fill vacancies drove a further strong increase in hiring activity during November. Permanent placements rose at a sharper rate than in October, the fifth quickest on record.

Vacancy growth slips to six-month low, but remains robust overall

Demand for staff continued to rise rapidly across the UK in November. This was despite the rate of expansion slipping to a six-month low.

Continuing decline in total candidate supply in the market.

Latest data indicated that the downturn in candidate availability eased to its weakest since May during November. Nonetheless, the rate of decline remained substantial and among the quickest since data collection began in late 1997. Slower, but still rapid, falls were signalled for both permanent and temporary candidates, with recruiters often linking this to continued uncertainty around the pandemic, greater demand for staff and Brexit.

Permanent starters' salaries rise at unprecedented rate

Low candidate numbers and efforts to attract and secure workers drove further steep increases in pay for both permanent joiners and temporary staff in November. Furthermore, the rate of starting salary inflation accelerated to a fresh series high, while temp pay softened only slightly from October's all-time record.

Regional and Sector Variations

Sharp and accelerated rises in permanent placements were seen across all four monitored English regions in November. The Midlands and London posted the joint-strongest increases, while the slowest upturn was seen in the South of England.

London recorded the quickest increase in temp billings of all four monitored English regions in November. The softest, albeit still sharp, rise was seen in the Midlands.

November data signalled that growth of demand remained considerably stronger for private sector workers than public sector staff.

Full details and reaction can be found on the REC website here:

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