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Posted 15.08.19

The latest reports from the Office of National Statistics show that the number of people out of work fell again, by 33,000 to just 1.33 million.

The unemployment rate is now reported at just 3.9%, with a record number of 76.1% of people in work. It’s also been reported that average weekly wage growth hit 3.9% this year in June, above the expected growth of 3.6%. The employment rate is currently the highest it’s been for over 30 years, last seen at this rate in 1971.

Why is this?

The ONS report has found that the number of women employees rose by 74,000 in the last quarter, while the number of men in work only increased by just 2,000. Some of this can be attributed to the changes in the State Pension age limits for women, as less women are retiring between the ages of 60 -65.
While employment rates have been rising, the number of vacancies has fallen; in the last 6 months, there were less vacancies recorded than this time last year, as reported by Matt Hughes, the ONS deputy head of labour market statistics.

What we think

Our MD Kelly Kendall says: “Unemployment rates are still dropping but we are also seeing salaries increasing at a fast rate, probably the fastest we’ve seen in the last 10 years since the credit crunch of 2008/2009.

We are seeing the number of permanent employment opportunities slide which suggests that more employers are holding off taking on permanent recruits – this hesitation could be nervousness due to Brexit or flash backs to the credit crunch in 2008.

In February and March we saw a mini boom in requirements for temporary labour with companies looking to stock pile goods pre-Brexit but this requirement has dropped during quarter 2.  We have seen an increase in requirements within health and welfare but have experienced reduced requirements within the automotive sector.

Even though the unemployment rate continues to drop we still have more vacancies than ever.

The candidates are out there and we are working and engaging with our clients to ensure that we are finding them the right fit to build better futures for their organisations.”

To let us know your thoughts, get in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram or find our latest roles available here.

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