Bucking the trend or succeeding in a changing market?

We closely monitor the jobs market both nationally and locally and indeed contribute to many leading surveys on what’s happening in our industry.

By Neville Gee.

A report out today by our trade body the REC indicates that whilst the number of permanent placements by Recruitment Agencies nationally is rising, the trend is slowing, and that the skills shortage is intensifying. Engineering continues to show the greatest shortages but with a rising demand for blue collar roles such as bricklayers, drivers and electricians.

We finished our Half Year with a record number of permanent placements and the 2 months since has seen a further rise both in the number of roles on our books and in the number of placements we have made.

We are heavily focused across the aerospace, automotive and manufacturing sectors taking advantage of our great location in East Lancashire, so if anyone would be affected by these skills shortages it would be us. In fact, the opposite is true.

We have actually seen an improvement in the availability of candidates, especially within engineering and associated professions. Maybe it’s us doing our job better than the competition, maybe we’ve just been lucky, or maybe we’re actually seeing the labour market start to move now.

Both during and as we were coming out of recession, it was difficult to entice good staff to risk the relative security of their job for a new company with all the risk that can entail. Maybe loyalty came into it too, maybe the fact that starting salaries weren’t moving much either.

Whatever the reasons, and there will be more than one, things seem to be changing. Companies looking to employ are offering slightly enhanced packages, maybe they are being a little more flexible in what they are demanding and maybe candidates do now feel safe enough with the economic outlook to make that jump to a new role.

Of course there are still some specific and acute shortages in specialist roles but overall we are finding the market is gathering pace rapidly. Roles are coming in, candidates are responding and we are filling quicker than ever. Long may it continue...