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Adzuna publishes its UK Job Market Report

Adzuna has published its UK Job Market Report revealing a record number of vancancies, but stagnant wages.

The Adzuna Job Index reveals there are currently 748,923 live vacancies in UK, setting a new record and showing a significant increase of 9% over 6 months. Competition for roles across the nation also saw a sizable decrease, reaching a record low of just 1.7 candidates for each vacancy.  

Despite optimism from economists that we're beginning to see the first green shoots of wage recovery in Britain, the Adzuna data suggests no real indications of an imminent revival. Compounding the need for caution in reactions to the burgeoning job market, despite increasing availability of job roles across the UK, this month’s analysis also shows average salaries falling 2.2% to &pound33,245. 

Andrew Hunter, Co-Founder of Adzuna said. “Although there were clearly some positive trends at play in the labour market at the end of October, a cautionary overview is still advisable, with considerable declines in average salaries nationwide and limited indications of an imminent recovery. With available vacancies up an impressive 9.2% on October last year, it would be encouraging to think a similar boost in pay rates could be anticipated, but Adzuna’s leading indicator data show no signs of this in the near future.” 

Where are all the jobs?   

Nationwide competition for jobs has reached a record low, down from 2.3 jobseekers per vacancy in October 2012 to just 1.7 in October 2013. Five of the top ten best cities to get a job boast less than one jobseeker per vacancy, and all of these are located in the South of England with one exception: Aberdeen, which this month claims the number two spot. For the second month running, Cambridge claims the accolade of the easiest place in Britain to find a job with 3 times more vacancies than jobseekers – a ratio that is echoed in Aberdeen and Guildford. Competition for jobs in the North of England remains intense with over 20 jobseekers per job in Salford, the Wirrall, and Sunderland. In the number four spot, Hull, the long-time leader of the most competitive job market charts,  has seen significant improvements in recent months, moving from 41.9 claimants per vacancy to 21 since April 2013.. 

Salary levels continue to slide 

With average advertised salaries at a new 8-month low and significant  monthly drops in pay levels, the clear question is when pay levels can be expected to mirror the encouraging growth we have seen in vacancy availability. Despite high market expectations and a hopeful outlook, Adzuna data shows no signs of a potential salary increase in 2013. 

A steady build for construction jobs market 

Construction is a relatively small sector, accounting for just over 6.3% of UK economic output, but its growth is reflective of sustained economic pick-up. It is an important barometer in assessing economic health, and its certainly moving in the right direction.   Adzuna figures highlighted 24,346 available jobs in this sector in October. Compared to vacancy levels across the industry 6 months ago, this shows a 31% improvement, clearly underlining the positivity in the construction market. Although there have been monthly fluctuations, the significant rise in output we have seen in recent weeks speaks of an industry that is starting to find its feet again. A surge in homebuilding is undoubtedly driving the figures up, with growing demand for houses, driven partly by Help to Buy, which then filters through into the jobs market too.  With salary levels yet to catch up with the generalised optimism elsewhere in the sector, however,  calls for caution from within the industry still abound. 

Adam Pode, director of research and analysis for Europe at Staffing Industry Analysts, commented, “Companies facing a backlog of work are currently creating new jobs in order to help fill their orders and as a result, employment is likely to continue to rise until Christmas. The key question for 2014 is will the existing confidence lead to a virtuous economic cycle where business managers start major investment programs.  Watch the Adzuna and PMI surveys in January and February to see if this is happening.”  

The most promising signs of a salary recovery can be seen in Wales and Scotland with wages up year-on-year in October. The rest of the country, however, is yet to feel the benefit of these green shoots of recovery, as ten out of 12 regions see continued declines against October 2012 pay rates. Northern Ireland has seen a particularly significant salary drop, with current pay levels down 9.4% on last year.

IT wages around the country continue to outperform every other sector in Britain. Coupled with numbers technology startup jobs growing by 44% in the last year, this trend suggests serious signs of vitality in the sector. Construction companies around Britain are rightly calling for a “sanity check” around optimism of a recovery in the building jobs market. While the number of construction roles available shows promising growth and positivity remains, wages are yet to hit the same upward curve.

 

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