Innovantage Demand Barometer.

Data gathered from end of 2018.

The number of original job ads posted online in November 2018 was 9.5 per cent higher than in the same month in 2017. Official vacancy numbers were up just 4.9 per cent, but YoY changes in advertising volumes vary significantly by sector. 

At 2.93 million in November 2018, the number of original job ads captured by Innovantage was 9.5 per cent higher than in the same month last year and a noteworthy 32.9 per cent higher than in November 2016.  

  • In addition, 863k reposts of previous adverts were captured – suggesting that the role was unfilled via the original post and/or it was a role that an employer continually advertises. This equated to 25 per cent of the volume of original ads posted – up from a 22 per cent repost rate last month.
  • At 3.80m, the combined total of original job ads and reposts was 8.3 per cent higher than in November 2017, and 28.0 per cent higher than in November 2016.  

Behind the 9.5 per cent YoY increase in the volume of original job ads, there was a widely varying picture, by industry. This range from 26.1 per cent YoY growth in the numbers of ads in the Education sector, and a 20.3 per cent increase in original ads for Health & Social Care work, to 11.6 per cent fewer ads posted for IT & Telecoms roles. 

As to what extent ongoing uncertainty over the future rights of non-UK nationals to stay and work in the UK is impacting the availability of staff, it is undoubtedly exacerbating legacy worker shortages. Whilst no data is available relating to the extent to which state schools are dependent on non-UK nationals in their workforce, international staff made up 20 per cent of all university staff and 30 per cent of all academic staff in 2017, and are critical for some subjects such as engineering, where they make up 43 per cent, and Biology/Maths/Human Sciences where the proportion is 39 per cent.

Similarly, within the NHS, around 144,000 out of 1.2 million staff reported a non-British nationality in June 2018. This was 12.7 per cent of all staff for whom a nationality is known, or one in every eight.

Setting the 9.5 per cent annual growth in the number of original job ads into context of the most recent total number of UK workforce jobs (35.1m in September 2018), the workforce jobs total was just 0.5 per cent (185k) higher than a year earlier and 1.5 per cent (537k) higher than in September 2016. 

In context of the official ONS vacancy number for the quarter ending November 2018 (845k), UK vacancy numbers were 4.9 per cent higher than the figure one year earlier and 12.6 per cent higher than in September-November 2016. 

For each official vacancy, employers and their intermediaries posted 3.5 original jobs ads in November 2018 (a ratio of 3.5 to 1):

  • This was higher than the ratio of 3.3 to 1 recorded one year earlier. 
  • The ratio of total ads (including reposts) to official vacancies was 4.5 to 1 in November 2018
  • This was up from 4.3 to 1 in November 2017.  

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