Job Market Insights – Summer 2023

Unlocking insights

We’ve got our tentacles on the pulse of the job market and we’re here to bring you the latest on the job market landscape.

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) have just dropped their latest report on the current state of the job market, and we’re here to break it down for you. 

  • Permanent placements fall at quickest rate since June 2020.
  • Upturn in candidate availability gathers pace.
  • Pay pressures ease only slightly amid rising cost of living.

Cloudy with a chance of sunshine

The REC has reported on a dampened job market but with some sunny spells brightening the outlook. Businesses are not yet confident enough in the economic outlook to commit to permanent hires. This has led to the steepest pace of decline in placements since June 2020.

  • While the demand for temporary workers remains strong, the availability of workers has shrunk in recent months as job hunters hold out for permanent roles.
  • Labour supply has risen substantially. The overall availability of staff has risen at a substantial pace amid the slowdown in recruitment and reports of redundancies. This means that there are now more people available for work than there are jobs available overall in the UK. But that doesn’t always make it easy to find the right fit.
  • Competition for skilled workers is still high, and employers are willing to pay more to attract and retain skilled workers. However, the pace of wage growth is slowing down as the economy cools.

What does this mean for businesses?

  • Businesses should be prepared for a slower pace of hiring in the coming months. It will take longer to find the right person for your vacancy. We can take the pressure off by searching and first interviewing candidates, so you only have to select from our recommended shortlist on your client portal.
  • Businesses may need to be more creative in their recruitment strategies, such as offering more flexible working arrangements. In a recent Hays poll on LinkedIn, flexible working came second only to pay for people searching for jobs. Think about what you offer your employees and remember to tell us so we can shout about it in our advertising.
  • Businesses should be prepared to compete for talent, as the number of available candidates is increasing. Strategies such as our video recruitment to attract candidates could be key in getting your job vacancy noticed by the right people.

If you’ve never used a recruitment agency before, read our blog to find out why you should pass the hiring torch to save yourself time, money, and a whole lot of stress!

What does this mean for job seekers?

  • Job seekers should be prepared for a more competitive job market. Those who adapt and are open to trying new things will be more successful. Consider temping to try out a new industry. Hospitality and construction are industries that are experiencing shortages, so now is an opportune time to find work in these areas.
  • Job seekers should be proactive in their job search and should be prepared to negotiate on salary. Start thinking about what could put your application ahead of the rest or have a chat with Anna or Katherine to see what you can do to supercharge your CV.
  • Job seekers should consider taking on temporary work while they look for a permanent role. So many of our temp jobs end up in permanent employment, it really is a great strategy when looking for work. Neil Carberry, REC Chief Executive, said ‘Temping keeps people in work when firms are uncertain about the future path of the economy – it is a huge UK success story.’

There is opportunity out there.

The UK job market is facing some challenges in the short term, but there are still opportunities for businesses and job seekers who are prepared to adapt. Neil Carberry, REC Chief Executive, commented in the report ‘Hiring overall is still at a good level, and some sectors remain under pressure from significant labour shortages, including hospitality and construction – so there is opportunity out there for job seekers.’

Finding the right people for the right jobs.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help make your recruitment outlook sunnier in the current job market.



Source: The REC Report on Jobs Market

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.