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UK Job vacancies hit one year high in August Says Adzuna

UK Job vacancies hit one year high in August Says Adzuna


•             Total number of UK jobs advertised in August up 1.5% year-on-year to 534,269, the highest number in a year

•             Competition for job vacancies at lowest level on record, with 2.6 jobseekers for every vacancy

•             Advertised UK salaries rise for the second month, up 0.7% on July, but still down 1.3% year-on-year

•             Persistent youth unemployment concerns, with over 20 jobseekers per entry-level job

•             Salaries advertised for graduate positions are down a concerning 22% year-on-year to &pound21,709

•             Data suggests unemployment will fall below 7.0% before 2016, the Bank of England's current prediction

The number of advertised job vacancies in the UK hit a twelve-month high in August 2013, and the squeeze on salaries eased, according to the latest UK Job Market Report from, the search engine for jobs.

There were 534,269 UK jobs advertised in August, up 1.5% from this time last year, as the economic pick-up translated into an increase of 7,900 vacancies between July and August.

Competition for jobs has eased. There were 2.6 jobseekers for every vacancy in August, down from 2.7 in July, and the sixth consecutive monthly fall.

Average advertised salaries continued to recover this month, rising 0.7% between July and August to &pound33,687 p.a. – the second consecutive month of increase – as the gap between the rise in inflation and salary growth narrowed. Despite this rise, the average advertised wage is still 1.3% lower than in August 2012.

Flora Lowther, head of research at Adzuna, explains: “A year-high in vacancies is a strong sign that the economy is gearing up for recovery. There are more jobs to choose from and competition for vacancies is easing as the unemployed are slowly being integrated back into the workforce. Employers are looking to hire more staff in anticipation of increasing work levels, and salaries are showing signs of improvement too, suggesting quality job creation, not just cheaper or temporary staff. The growing number of vacancies is a key marker of economic health. Vacancy data is not distorted by a growing job-seeking population in the way that the unemployment rate is – it’s a far more reliable measure of economic vitality. With vacancy growth strong, Adzuna predicts that unemployment should fall below 7.0% sooner than 2016 – more quickly than the Bank of England is predicting – triggering interest rates to rise.”

Less positive picture for graduates

Despite the national increase in total vacancies, job creation for graduates is slowing. The number of advertised vacancies for grads fell 6% from July to August. Year-on-year, the fall in advertised graduate salaries is startling, with the average salary down 21.5% from &pound27,653 in August 2012. Employers are also squeezing the salaries on offer for entry-level jobs, down 6% from &pound23,131 in July 2013.

Flora Lowther, comments: “The jobs market is expanding, as more people – particularly new grads – are looking for work. Unemployment has fallen to 7.7% despite the flood of new starters, and there are more vacancies being offered.

“However the bottom of the market is being squeezed. Since the financial crisis, unemployed new starters have been struggling to find work, and adding themselves to the pile of milkround CVs.  Such high competition for entry level roles puts the power into employers hands. Their response is to squeeze salaries.”

Table 1

July 2013

August 2013

Month Change

12 month change

UK Vacancies





Jobseekers per Vacancy





Av. Advertised UK Salary





Northern job market slowly catching up

The North East was the only region of the UK bar London to show a year-on-year salary growth. Advertised salaries grew by 1.6% over the year to &pound28,011, bucking the national trend, which saw a fall of 1.3% year-on-year.

Competition for jobs in the North also declined year-on-year. There were 4.4 jobseekers per vacancy in the North West, down from 4.6 this time last year, whilst in the North East the number of jobseekers per vacancy fell from 6.2 to 5.1 in August 2013.

Flora Lowther comments: “London and the South East still dominate the UK jobs market, but the labour market in the North is slowly recovering. Competition for jobs in cities like Manchester and Newcastle has eased in the last six months, as employers have created more vacancies in the private sector.”

Although the jobs market in the North is picking up steam, it lags behind the South overall. Of the ten best cities to find a job in August, only one was in Scotland – Aberdeen – with the remaining nine all in the South of England.

Job market sectors

Vacancies in manufacturing rose to a one-year high in August, whilst construction jobs increased 6%. The property sector has also witnessed an uptick in vacancies, up 8% on Q1, as the housing market continues to build health.

IT jobs showed the biggest advertised salary growth year-on-year in August, rising 7.1% to &pound42,658, with the Engineering sector showing the second largest growth (4.7%) and the Retail sector the third (4.4%).

But many advertised jobs are failing to show the salary on offer, particularly for entry level roles, making it especially difficult for jobseekers to know what pay to expect at a time when salaries are in constant flux. Adzuna has launched Jobsworth to counter this problem, a prediction tool that displays a salary estimate for every job ad with no advertised wage. 


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