In response to the Labour Market Statistics from the ONS, Neil Carberry, CEO of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation said:
“Despite a record fall in hours worked, unemployment remained stable to June – a sure sign that the Job Retention Scheme achieved its short-term aim. The challenge now is longer-term. Payroll data for July shows 730,000 fewer people in paid employment than in March. As businesses make decisions about the staff they need, this number is likely to grow in the coming months.
“There are signs of a modest recovery in the rising number of job vacancies. Our Jobs Recovery Tracker shows that in mid-July there were over one million active job postings – a number that has been rising steadily. The challenge now is to help firms keep staff and boost hiring. That is why we have called for a targeted cut to National Insurance as a way of reducing the cost of employment without hitting pay packets. But more will be needed to support the newly unemployed, including support from professional recruiters through the Government’s proposed private sector advice scheme, and access to training. Government must now act with urgency to ensure these schemes are up and running through the autumn.
“Businesses need to enter 2021 with certainty – that means Government ensuring the brakes are off on the economy as it recovers. This must include a Brexit deal that helps firms to trade freely with Europe.”