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February REC Job Report

Posted on 20/03/2018 by

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The REC Report on Jobs provides a comprehensive guide to the UK labour market. The February report on jobs highlights permanent placements continuing to rise throughout the month of February.

Key points: 

  • Softer rise in permanent placements as temp billings growth accelerates
  • Starting salary inflation holds close to 31-month high amid candidate shortages
  • Growth in staff vacancies edges down to 14-month low

Permanent placements

After January witnessed permanent placements rising at the joint fastest rate since April 2015, February saw permanent placements expand at weaker, but still a noticeable pace. The rate of expansion slightly declining since the turn of the new year. As a result, business confidence looks to be remaining strong.  This is backed up by the fact temporary billings continues to rise, with the rate of growth accelerating from January.

Demand for Staff

The demand for staff remained strong during February with staff vacancies continuing to rise for both permanent and temporary placements, however it was the weakest increase witnessed for 14 months. Candidate availability remains to decline but at its slowest for 13 months. The issue remains; businesses are struggling to find candidates for their vacancies because of the shortage in candidate availability and ever-increasing job vacancies. Businesses are spending even more on starting salaries to make their vacancies attractive as possible, with added-extras such as opportunities for development and progression. Starting salaries inflation eased from January’s 31 month peak but remains marked. With a deteriorating pool of candidates, business continue to spend to attract the right candidates to hire for vacancies they desperately need to fill.

Accounting and Finance within the Midlands

The Midlands witnessed the quickest increase in permanent placements in comparison to all other regions. This was also the case for temporary billings where the increase in placements continues to increase sharply. The accounting and finance sector registered a marked rise in demand for staff indicating how difficult it is for business to fill their vacancies. However, the report highlights how starting salaries are not enough for attracting the right candidates for vacancies because businesses need to prove they are focused on creating a culture and investing in its employees.

In summary, the report highlights the clear opportunities for candidates looking to move jobs due to the amount of vacancies as well as the starting salaries and bonuses on offer. But, on the other hand businesses face challenging conditions in the labour market because candidate supply can’t meet the demand. Recruiters continue to fill vacancies due to the pool of candidates they possess in comparison to the deteriorating pool of candidate available. Businesses as a result continue to make their jobs as attractive to candidates as possible to attract the skills and talent within their business.

Employers are increasingly turning to specialist recruiter Addington Ball to enhance their options, as Addington Ball has an established and highly developed network of financial professionals operating in the Midlands region. If your business is not getting the appropriate calibre of candidate, then call Addington Ball on 01926 290290 for a confidential conversation about your requirements.

Addington Ball is a leading finance recruiter based in the Midlands specialising in the recruitment of finance and accountancy professionals. If you are considering a change of scenery or a fresh challenge, search for your next opportunity via our job search page.