‘Demand for staff continuing to grow’

The KPMG offices in Lanyon Place, Belfast Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Demand for staff is growing across the country amid a continued fall in the number of candidates for jobs, new research suggests.

Recruiters said they are placing record numbers of permanent and temporary workers into jobs.

Competition for workers has pushed up rates of starting pay for permanent and temporary staff in recent weeks, according to a survey of 400 recruitment and employment consultancies.

The biggest demand for permanent jobs is in computing and IT, while for temporary positions it is nursing and care, the poll by KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) found.

Claire Warnes, of KPMG, said: “The UK jobs market rocketed to near historic levels as new year approached.

“That’s despite it losing a little fizz with the pace of accelerating demand for staff, wage and salary growth and vacancies all easing slightly.

“Employers in all sectors haven’t lost their appetite to hire, but many will be frustrated by the pressure these inflationary and competitive conditions, which are likely to continue for some time, are putting on their operating costs and ability to expand.”

REC chief executive Neil Carberry said: “2022 will be the year we discover staff shortages will outlive the pandemic as an economic issue.

“This survey shows again how tight the labour market was at the end of last year. Demand for staff is growing across every sector and region of the UK, and candidate availability is still falling.

“These trends have been slowing for the past few months, but that is not surprising considering the record pace of change earlier in the autumn of 2021.

“Businesses need to make sure they are reacting to the long-term challenges of this market, thinking harder about their offer to staff and how to shape their future workforce.”