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The latest REC survey has revealed that despite UK businesses continuing to face a challenging economic climate, many are still planning to increase their use of umbrella company contractors and other temporary workers.

The recent Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s (REC) JobsOutLook report, surveyed 600 employers across the UK and questioned a range of respondents from different industries across the public, private and non-profit sector.  The survey focuses on asking these employers about their hiring intentions over the next quarter and the next year.

According to the figures, 38% of those surveyed plan to increase their use of contractors in the next three months (up 2% on last month) and further 50% intend to maintain current numbers.

When questioned about the next 4-12 month period, 36% of respondents said that they plan to increase their numbers of contractors within this time frame, which is up 1% on last month.  55% said that they will maintain their current level of use of agency workers.

REC director of policy Tom Hadley said, “Although the ONS reported a rise in unemployment last week, it is important to emphasise that the employment figures were also up.

“Currently it is small businesses that are the most cautious about hiring and we hope that announcements made by the Chancellor in last week’s Budget to make it cheaper and easier to hire people will help to boost business confidence in the future.”

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