Job opportunities 17% up in December
Job opportunities were 17% higher in December compared with the same time last year and more than a fifth higher than two years ago in spite of 2011's economic turbulence, according to a new piece of analysis.
The Reed Job Index examined job vacancy trends from over 8,000 recruiters across the UK and found that the typical seasonal falls in vacancies saw month-on-month index figures down 12 points (9%) in December compared with November, although two job sectors - hospitality and purchasing - bucked the downward trend.
This fall followed the record highs of November, and brought the December 2011 Index back to September's level, making it 21% higher than two years ago when the Index was set at 100 in December 2009. Overall, Reed said that the year-end report "demonstrates how sustained the growth in demand for new staff has been in 2011 when compared to 2010".
Martin Warnes, managing director of reed.co.uk, commented: "The year-on-year increase in demand for new staff is particularly striking against the backdrop of economic turmoil of the last few months. The traditional seasonal drop in recruitment activity in December has had its impact against the two-year highs recorded in November, but the fact that the number of new job vacancies on offer remains 17% higher than 12 months ago is significant. Skilled technical staff in traditional areas of heavy industry, like engineering, have been especially sought after, alongside IT, telecommunications, leisure and tourism staff.
"Certainly employers have become more cautious as 2011 draws to a close, and it is impossible to predict the impact of any new economic challenges that lie ahead. However, right now, UK employers are not only investing in new talent to fill their immediate needs, they are clearly planning for growth in 2012."