The Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC)’s latest Jobs Recovery Tracker has revealed that the number of active job postings in the UK has risen slowly over the past four weeks. There were almost 963,000 job postings between 1-7 June, up from 950,000 in the week starting 11 May.
The number of new job adverts in the first week of June was 112,000, a significant 64% more than for the last week of May. This could indicate more companies starting to hire again since the lockdown measures have been eased, and that the recovery is starting to pick up speed.
Scotland and Wales are currently leading the recovery – active job postings there have risen by 3.6% and 2.3% respectively between the weeks of 25-31 May and 1-7 June. Individual hiring hotspots for the first week of June include Bridgend & Neath Port Talbot (+14.7%), Dumfries & Galloway (+13.1%), and East Lothian & Midlothian (+10.4%).
These areas also saw significant rises in new job postings, with numbers increasing by 18.7% in Bridgend & Neath Port Talbot, 15.1% in Dumfries & Galloway and 13.3% in East Lothian & Midlothian.
On the other end of the spectrum, active job postings have decreased the most in Ards & North Down (-9.9%), Breckland & South Norfolk (-8.2%) and West Kent (-7.0%).
In terms of individual occupations, the largest increase in active job adverts was for customer service reps, rising by 18.6% between the end of May and the start of June (25-31 May and 1-7 June). There were also significant increases in postings for parking attendants (+17.9%), speech therapists (+8.8%) and writers (+6.5%).
However, the hospitality industry continues to suffer due to public health measures. Active job postings for chefs (-4.5%), waiters and waitresses (-5.6%), catering assistants (-8.0%) and bar staff (-15.7%) all decreased significantly from the previous week.
It is also interesting that job adverts for primary school teachers fell by 6.0% between late May and early June, given the government’s announcement that English primary schools will not be required to open fully before the summer holidays.
Neil Carberry, Chief Executive of the REC, said:
“We have been hearing from recruiters and business leaders all over the UK that the jobs market has been slowly improving over the past few weeks, and it’s good to see that backed up by this data. Scotland and Wales leading the way may reflect a more cautious approach from the devolved governments to closing construction and industrial sites at the height of the pandemic – with growth this week driven by sites reopening.
“As lockdown measures continue to be eased and the economy gradually opens up, matching jobseekers with opportunities quickly will be more important than ever – especially given the anticipated spike in unemployment. Recruiters across the UK are ready to help, working with all UK governments to support action to tackle the scourge of unemployment.”
Matthew Mee, Director, Workforce Intelligence at Emsi said:
“It’s encouraging to see there are certain regions across the UK that are now beginning to increase their recruitment marketing activity. Whilst this certainly isn’t a uniform or consistent trend as yet – we can see the recruitment sector itself is beginning to re-activate these efforts.
“There are also a number of other sectors where there are signs that recovery is igniting, with companies in transportation, construction, pharmaceuticals, engineering, technology and indeed some niche retailers who now appear to be actively recruiting.”