Original job ad volume returns to year on year growth

Innovantage Demand Barometer – November 2018

The number of original job ads posted online in October 2018 was 3.4 per cent higher than in the same month in 2017. When job reposts are added, however, the volume of total ads was 7.4 per cent down year-on-year. That said, YoY changes in advertising volumes and legacy non-UK national workforce dependency vary significantly by sector. 

At 2.68 million in October 2018, the number of original job ads captured by Innovantage was 3.4 per cent higher than in the same month last year and 15.2 per cent higher than in October 2016.  

  • In addition, 600k 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 22 per cent of the volume of original ads posted.
  • At 3.28m, the combined total of original job ads and reposts was 7.4 per cent lower than in October 2017, but 6.6 per cent higher than in October 2016.  

Industry profile: mixed demand, YoY, across the sectors, potentially fuelled by the loss of available workers

Behind the 3.4 per cent YoY increase in the volume of original job ads, there was a widely varying picture, by industry. For those sectors historically reliant upon non-UK nationals as a key element of their workforce, the decline in number of EU nationals within the UK workforce will be continuing to cause concern and – potentially – heighten advertising activity. Of particular note, there were 154k (14.9 per cent) fewer workers with EU8 nationality in the workforce in Q3 2018 than in the same period last year – and, overall, there were 132k (5.5 per cent) fewer workers from across the EU 27. The total number of non-EU nationals in the UK workforce increased by 34k (2.8 per cent) over the same period. 

Demand dynamics: official vacancy levels were up 5.5 per cent YoY

Setting the 3.4 per cent annual growth in the number of original job ads into context of the most recent total number of UK workforce jobs (35.2m in June 2018), the workforce jobs total was just 0.4 per cent (133k) higher than a year earlier and 1.7 per cent (584k) higher than in June 2016. And in context of the official ONS vacancy number for the quarter ending October 2018 (845k), UK vacancy numbers were 5.5 per cent higher than the figure one year earlier and 11.3 per cent higher than in August-October 2016. 

For each official vacancy, employers and their intermediaries posted 3.2 original jobs ads in October 2018 (a ratio of 3.2 to 1):

  • This was the same ratio of as recorded one year earlier. 

The ratio of total ads (including reposts) to official vacancies was 3.9 to 1 in October 2018:

  • This was down from 4.4 to 1 in October 2017.  

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