UK Job Market Maintains Strong Position Despite Recent Slip in Vacancies

Despite the UK job market experiencing a slight drop in vacancies in February 2016, CV-Library, the UK’s largest job site, is urging the market not to panic or to attribute this decline to fears of a Brexit.

The job site reported a 5% month-on-month decline in job vacancies this February. Despite concerns being raised that a potential Brexit is paralyzing the market, CV-Library reassures the nation that the decline in vacancies is normal. The decline follows a surge in hiring that took place in January, which reported a 43.8% growth in vacancies when compared with the previous month.

Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library comments:

“It’s typical to see a drop in vacancies in February – UK businesses always ramp up hiring in January following the slow-down over Christmas. It’s not realistic to expect the market to maintain that pace of growth, and we often anticipate the numbers taking a slight dip in February. This isn’t something the nation should be worried about; in fact we’re seeing the labour market in a stronger position this year than last.”

This February the job site reported an 18.6% rise of vacancies year-on-year, and candidate interest maintained pace with a 20.3% increase in applications during the same period. The good news continues as job growth can be seen across the nation’s major cities and in key UK sectors:

Job Growth – Top 10 Cities

  1. Liverpool: 38.5%
  2. Edinburgh: 36.8%
  3. Hull: 35.6%
  4. Cardiff: 30%
  5. Leeds: 23.5%
  6. Manchester: 21.7%
  7. London: 20.8%
  8. Glasgow: 14.1%
  9. Birmingham: 12.7%
  10. Southampton: 12.5%

Job Growth – Top 10 Sectors

  1. Education: 37.8%
  2. Distribution: 32.6%
  3. Management: 32.6%
  4. Property Services: 32.3%
  5. Agriculture: 30.6%
  6. Customer Services: 29.9%
  7. Construction: 25.6%
  8. Administration: 25.2%
  9. Marketing: 20.1%
  10. Electronics: 17.5%

Biggins concludes: “It’s easy to attribute minor shifts in the labour market to wider social and political issues, but by looking at the data through an objective lens, it’s clear that alarms are being raised unnecessarily. While the EU referendum does bring a wealth of questions – such as worries about further skills shortages – it’s still early days and there’s no reason to suggest that the UK is experiencing a hiring freeze as a result.

Important Dates For Your Diary

April sees many important changes in legislation so below is a summary of the key changes 

April 2016 – Compulsory National Living Wage (NLW) is introduced

On the 8th July 2015, the Government announced in its Summer Budget that a new compulsory NLW would soon come into effect. A compulsory NLW is due to be introduced in April 2016 (the specific date is yet to be declared) at £7.20 per hour for all workers aged 25 and over. The current national minimum wage for those under 25 will continue to apply. Employers should ensure that all staff are on that rate by April 2016.

6 April 2016 - Increased income tax personal allowance

The personal allowance increased to £11,000.

6 April 2016 - Employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs) will be abolished for apprentices under the age of 25

In the Autumn Statement (2014), the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that employer NICs for young apprentices are abolished from April 2016. Employers will not have to pay Class 1 national insurance contributions on earnings up to the upper earnings limit for apprentices aged under 25 to make it cheaper to employ young people.

Posted: Wed 09 Mar 2016
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