Staff Shortages

Rapid UK hiring growth hampered by staff shortage says Adzuna

Tens of thousands of restaurant, hotel, event and leisure jobs are available as England moves to the next step on the roadmap out of lockdown. However, jobseeker shortages are making these jobs hard to fill, according to new research from global job search engine Adzuna.

Job adverts have gone skywards since the stay at home order was lifted at the end of March, climbing 18 per cent from 837,300 at the end of March (22nd – 28th) to 987,800 during the first week of May 2021 (3rd – 9th), powered by hiring surges in hospitality & catering, retail & leisure. It marks the sixth consecutive week in which job ads have topped 900k and the highest total since November 2019, seventeen months ago.

Since restrictions began easing, the five sectors seeing fastest recovery are: hospitality & catering (+188 per cent since the end of March to 58,400 jobs); logistics & warehouse (+36 per cent to 74,800 jobs); retail (+33 per cent to 17,800 jobs); legal (+31 per cent to 19,200 jobs); and manufacturing (+27 per cent to 25,500 jobs).

Key May 17th milestones include allowing restaurants to offer indoor dining, indoor sport and gym classes to resume, weddings with up to 30 guests to take place, hotels and B&Bs to reopen, cinemas and theatres to reopen, outdoor events to resume, and the legalisation of foreign travel. Adzuna data reveals affected sectors and companies are hiring at pace in anticipation of this reopening, with tens of thousands of related jobs on offer.

The hiring environment is becoming tighter with fewer overseas jobseekers applying for UK jobs, contributing to an overall supply shortage. Total jobseekers from North America and Western Europe searching for jobs in the UK fell more than 50 per cent between February ‘20 and April ‘21, equalling over 250,000 fewer monthly overseas jobseekers actively looking for UK-based work.

This decline has been led by falling overseas jobseeker interest in service-led industries in particular, while searches for healthcare roles have remained steady.

“We’re approaching the milestone of 1 million jobs in the UK, thanks to rapid hiring over recent weeks ready for the final lifting of lockdown restrictions,” says Andrew Hunter, co-founder Adzuna. “In particular, retailers and restaurants & bars are hiring at pace for the reopening – though there is hot competition for staff, with many Hospitality and Retail workers having left the industry to look for more secure work after the ups and downs of the last year. There are also far fewer foreign workers seeking employment in the UK, with overseas interest in UK jobs more than halving from before the pandemic, hitting these industries hard. UK employers can no longer rely on overseas workers to plug employment gaps.”

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