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Staff appointments are rising whilst overall candidate availability declines

The latest results from the KPMG and REC UK Report on Jobs have shown notable increases in both staff appointments and starting salaries. And although job vacancies have expanded at the softest pace seen nearly two years, the growth for demand still remains historically high. The continued sharp rise in starting salaries is driven by the sustained decline in candidate availability; declining at its quickest pace for nine months. Commenting on the latest results, James Stewart, Vice Chair at KPMG says, "A four-decade low in unemployment and a dwindling supply of EU workers means good candidates are at a premium. Consequently, we’re seeing wages pushed upwards and a trend of canny workers job hopping to secure a pay rise rather than remaining loyal to their existing employers.”

Candidate Placements

Permanent Placements

The number of placements into permanent roles during October increased, at the second sharpest rate since March. However, candidate shortages slowed the overall growth rate.

All regions saw steep increases, with the strongest seen in the South of England.

Temporary Placements

Temporary/contract billings rose at the fastest rate since May, driven by the strong demand for temporary workers and lack of permanent staff availability.

The quickest increase was seen in the Midlands, but strong growth was seen in all regions.

Candidate Availability

October saw a sharp fall in the number of permanent staff available across the UK, with the sharpest decrease seen in the South of England. The drop in availbility was at its quickest rate in nine months.

There was also a sharp reduction in the availability of temporary staff - this was the steepest decrease in just under a year, with the Midlands seeing the sharpest decline.

Pay Pressures

Permanent Salaries
Permanent salaries continued to rise at a sharp rate, albeit at a slightly softer rate than September's 41-month high. This increase was noted across all regions.

Temporary/Contract Pay Rates

Despite easing to a seven-month low, hourly pay rates increased during October. London saw the highest rise in pay rates, while the slowest increase was seen in the North of England.

Demand for Staff

Permanent Roles
  1. IT & Computing
  2. Engineering
  3. Hotel & Catering
  4. Accounting/Financial
  5. Blue Collar
  6. Executive/Professional
  7. Secretarial/Clerical
  8. Nursing/Medical/Care
  9. Retail (not seasonally adjusted)
  10. Construction
Temporary Roles
  1. Nursing/Medical/Care
  2. Blue Collar
  3. Secretarial/Clerical
  4. Hotel & Catering
  5. Engineering
  6. IT & Computing
  7. Accounting/Financial
  8. Executive/Professional
  9. Construction
  10. Retail (not seasonally adjusted)