Latest data has revealed that employers’ confidence in the prospects for the UK economy turned negative this month for the first time since April.
However, despite these findings from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s (REC) latest JobsOutlook report, employers’ confidence in making hiring and investment decisions remained positive.
The proportion of hirers who use contract/temp agency workers highlighting plans to increase their numbers in the short-term (35%) and medium term (35%) at least doubled year-on-year.
This has led to two thirds (66%) of employers expressing concerns over the sufficient availability of agency workers this quarter, up from 34% a year earlier (May-July 2017), with marketing, media & creative and drivers the sectors facing the most significant challenges.
REC chief executive Neil Carberry, commented on the findings, “Our data shows employer confidence in the economy dipping in the face of uncertainty around the terms of the UK’s departure from the EU. So far this rising concern has only had a limited effect on employers’ own hiring plans, though, with hiring intentions still in positive territory.
“A shortage of available candidates in many areas of the economy means employers are having to work harder to bring in key staff – with many sectors, such as drivers and food supply, fearing they may be hit hard by future changes to the UK’s mobility deal with the EU.
“UK business needs to know what the Brexit deal will look like soon. The EU summit at the end of June failed to answer many questions and concerns – clarity on our future trading relationship and a comprehensive mobility and migration deal with the EU will give employers the capacity to invest and create jobs.”
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