Figures from the REC have shown the number of new job postings has remained high amidst the re-opening of the economy. The week of 5-11 April recorded a further 140,000 new job postings, giving a total of 1.37 million active job adverts in the UK. This is on top of a further 181,000 in the previous week, which was the highest weekly figure since the COVID-19 pandemic began. The organisation says the three best weeks for new job postings have all come since 8 March. The higher numbers of job postings over the last few weeks reflects rising business confidence and an increasing willingness to hire new staff as the economy opens up.
“The busy barbers and pub gardens this week are a sign that large sections of our economy are getting going again – and this growing confidence is reflected in hiring activity,” said Neil Carberry, chief executive of the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC). “The three best weeks for new job postings since the onset of the pandemic have come since the beginning of March. An increase in demand for hospitality roles as restaurants and pubs prepared to partially re-open their premises this week is particularly welcome news. With the vaccine rollout on schedule, businesses are increasingly confident this positive trend will continue. That will unlock investment and with it, new jobs.”
Carberry went of to say not every sector or region of the country would recover at the same rate, and many people will need help finding a job or transitioning into a new industry. Data from Northern Ireland, for example, is concerning – and businesses across the six counties will be looking to politicians from all sides to deliver clarity and stability to post-Brexit arrangements, so that they can invest with confidence.
“Across the whole of the UK, governments and businesses now need to work together to help people find new roles in this developing recovery,” says Carberry. “As our tracker shows, the challenge is increasingly about getting people to jobs, not the supply of jobs overall. That means making sure the skills system works. Addressing feedback from businesses that the current apprenticeship levy system is making things worse not better must be a priority in Westminster, in particular.”