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Permanent staff placements increased for the sixth month running during January, according to the Report on Jobs published by the Recruitment and Emplyment Confederation (REC) and KPMG today.
Although weaker than December's peak, the rate of growth remained marked. Temporary/contract staff billings also rose strongly, with the pace of expansion only slightly below the previous month's two-and-a-half year high.
Key points of the Report are:
- Growth of permanent placements eased from Decemberâ€™s peak but remained strong.
- Temporary/contract staff billings continued to rise at a marked pace.
- Demand for staff grew at strongest rate since July 2007.
Higher staff appointments were underpinned by a further improvement in demand for staff. Vacancies increased for the fourth consecutive month, and at the fastest rate since July 2007. The availability of staff to fill both permanent and temporary/contract vacancies continued to rise in January. However, in both cases, the rates of growth eased further from the elevated levels seen in late 2008 and early 2009.
Although permanent staff salaries continued to increase in January, the rate of growth eased slightly and remained weak by the survey's historical standards.
Kevin Green, the REC's Chief Executive, says "the growth in people getting permanent jobs eased in January but still remained positive overall. The number of vacancies reported by recruitment businesses also accelerated at the sharpest rate since July 2007, suggesting that we are now on the long road to recovery."
"The labour market is out of intensive care but it is still in a fragile state. While employers are hiring more now than at any other time in the last year, the recovery is tentative and must not be put at risk by taxes or regulatory changes."