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Scotland –Temporary billings rise but recruiters face challenges next year

17 December 2012

The Scottish labour market saw both permanent and temporary staff placements rise in November due to greater client demand. Temporary workers were most in demand in the medical/care/nursing sector, according to the latest report on jobs by the Bank of Scotland.

“Conditions in the Scottish labour market improved in November. Both the number of people appointed to jobs and the number of job vacancies rose in the month. Despite the economic slowdown, employers continue to hire suggesting a rising trend in business confidence,” said Donald MacRae, economist at the bank.

Temporary staff billings increased at the quickest pace in Dundee while the fastest rate of inflation for average temporary staff pay was recorded in Glasgow. Overall temporary billings have eased for the second month in a row. Availability for temporary workers fell for the fifth successive month.

The report shows that demand for temporary staff increased in seven sectors, including IT & computing, blue collar, secretarial and executive/professional. The accounts & financial sector was the only category to post a lower number of temporary job roles, now being in a third month of decline.

Challenges in 2013

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation said that the Scottish recruitment market is overall improving and that the Agency Workers Regulations have had less of an impact. But challenges such as skills shortages and client awareness remain one of the key challenges in the region.  

“There are encouraging signs in terms of the recruitment market in Scotland with REC members reporting strong demand for both temporary and permanent staff.  In a number of sectors the principal challenge is the lack of suitable candidates to meet this demand which is why we need both short and longer terms measures to address the skills disconnect,” said Lisa Boutineau of the REC. 

“Looking ahead, the other major concern is whether uncertainty over independence could impact on business confidence and hiring activities. This is something that REC Scotland will continue to monitor over the coming year.”

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