Skills shortage as UK vacancies surge

An increasing number of professional vacancies in the UK is not being matched by the number of jobseekers applying for the posts, according to a report from leading jobs board CV-Library.

The number of vacancies increased by 12.3 per cent during June, says the report, while the number of applications remained low, dropping by 3.2 per cent from the previous month."These changes have resulted in a whopping 13.8 per cent decrease in the number of applications per role, placing power back in the hands of candidates once again," reports CV-Library.Consequently, the report says, employers are having to boost salaries on offer in a bid to attract candidates, with the hospitality, distribution and design sectors recording the largest increases.Lee Biggins, CEO and founder of CV-Library, commented: “As the UK prepares to open up fully at the end of the month, businesses have been increasing their hiring efforts extensively."While this massive influx of vacancies is certainly positive for jobseekers, it has flipped the power dynamic of the UK job market on its head. This change means that candidates now hold the power and it’s important they use this opportunity to really negotiate for the job and compensation that they want."Business owners should evaluate the compensation package they’re offering to new staff and make adjustments if necessary. Failure to do so will have a significant impact on their ability to hire and could delay their recovery from the pandemic.”Meanwhile, a report from jobs site Adzuna and the Institute for Employment Studies says there are marked differences across areas of the UK between the number of jobs on offer and the number of candidates.Estimating there are now more than a million vacancies across all sectors and all skill levels, the report says that 43 local authorities have more than eight unemployed claimants chasing every job, notably in areas of Northern Ireland and Scotland.By contrast, the research found there were 33 local authority areas - including the London borough of Westminster, Cambridge, Guildford, Winchester, Exeter and Reading - where there were many fewer jobseekers than there were vacancies. "In general, these areas are clustered in the South East, South West and East Anglia with many of the areas strong tech and business hubs," said Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna."The last three months have been transformative for the UK jobs market. Employers are gaining in confidence as the economy reopens and more than a million jobs are on offer, with sectors like tech, trade and construction and logistics and warehousing leading the way."There is still work to do. On the one hand, vacancy levels are back at a pre-pandemic peak. But on the other hand, there are still significantly more claimants chasing every job than before the pandemic."This brings an underlying concern for the UK jobs market into sharp focus - many of the people currently out of work aren't matching up to the jobs on offer, despite an acute talent shortage."Tony Wilson, director of the Institute for Employment Studies, added: "Since the turn of the year we've gone from talking about an unemployment crisis to a recruitment crisis. "But the reality is that we're facing a bit of both – with many firms struggling to fill jobs at the same time that more than two million people are struggling to find work." 

Read more news and views from David Sapsted.

Subscribe to Relocate Extra, our monthly newsletter, to get all the latest international assignments and global mobility news.Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit provides free information, practical advice and support for HR, global mobility managers and global teams operating overseas.Global Mobility Toolkit download factsheets resource centreAccess hundreds of global services and suppliers in our Online Directory

Related Articles