REC Jobs Report - June Review

June continues to demonstrate the trend of a growing demand for talent and a respective scarcity of talent. This seems to exist both on the contract and the permanent side of the business.

Here at Vertex, we are certainly echoing this, a rise in demand for highly skilled technologists across both permanent and contract. Indeed, some clients are very happy to consider either – more important to them is the location of these rare beasts! Which does make one ponder the question of whether the line between permanent and contract engagement will further blur in the future?

We are working most effectively with clients who understand and listen to the market conditions. These clients are prepared to be as “agile” about their recruitment processes as they are about their software development processes!

We are also seeing a noticeable uplift in the amount of individuals who experience a “counter offer” at point of resignation to go on in their career. It is critical that our clients have painted a good and true picture of the future opportunities for individuals when they move. This helps to mitigate this phenomena – there are many good reasons NOT to consider a counter offer (See next post [MB1]  ).

Some key stats from the jobs report:

  • Six in ten employers (63%) plan to increase permanent headcount in next three months and seven in ten (70%) plan to increase permanent headcount in next 4–12 months.
  • One third (32%) of employers expect to see a shortage of temporary workers with technical and engineering skills and 16% of employers anticipate a shortage of permanent workers with the same skills.
  • Last month the positive net balance of short-term for hiring intentions fell by 11 percentage points. This month sentiment rallied by 3 percentage points to 62%. Notably, just 1% of hirers intend to reduce permanent headcount over the next quarter but more than six in ten (62%) intend to increase numbers.
  • Medium-term sentiment in permanent hiring remains steady in May 2015. Seven in ten employers (70%) plan to increase the number of permanent workers over the next 4–12 months, which is offset by 8% who plan to decrease permanent headcount.
  • Technical/engineering and driving and distribution have persistently been cited as anticipated skill shortage areas. With 16% of employers identifying skill shortages in technical and engineering job functions, and significantly more employers who use agency staff identifying this job function, there is a genuine worker shortage in this skill set.
  • In the next 3 months the proportion of hirers who plan to increase agency worker numbers over the next quarter increased by 4 percentage points, from 23% last month to 27% this month. A further 70% of employers plan to hold existing levels and just 3% plan to reduce the number of agency workers which suggests that competition for skills will be acute.
  • In the next 4–12 months almost three in ten (29%) employers plan to increase their agency worker numbers in the medium term, and almost seven in ten (68%) plan to retain current headcount numbers. Only 3% of employers plan to release workers which may create challenges.
  • One third (32%) of employers are concerned about the shortage of technical and engineering agency workers. This is coupled with 16% of employers who expect to see a shortage of technical and engineering permanent workers, which exacerbates the shortfall in availability.
  • Nearly all employers (97%) state they would have ‘no’ surplus workforce capacity or ‘a little’ should demand increase. It is clear that the significant majority of UK plc is continuing to operate a ‘just in time’ resourcing strategy. Just 3% of employers have ‘a fair amount’ of capacity down from 11% a year earlier
  • Four in five employers (82%) use agency workers to provide short-term access to key strategic skills. This is now the most important factor in using agency workers. This is a significant change in what they deemed important two years ago when ‘covering leave’ and ‘meeting peaks in demand’ were primary factors.