Key points from September survey:
– Fastest rise in permanent placements for 16 months
– Staff pay increases at faster pace
– Staff availability continues to fall sharply

Neil Carberry, Chief Executive at the REC says:
“UK businesses are resilient, but they’re struggling to find the people they need to drive growth and opportunity. Recruiters’ specialist skills help to address this, but with Brexit looming a comprehensive mobility deal with the EU will be needed to underpin prosperity. Higher skills investment, driven by a reformed apprenticeship levy, will also be essential.
An effective approach to post-Brexit immigration must acknowledge that there is unmet need for roles of all sorts – not just those filled by the very highest earners. Keeping deliveries going, patients being treated and goods on the shelves means an open approach to workers from elsewhere. Businesses understand the need for control – but this is not in conflict with openness to those who come to contribute.”

Staff Appointments

Growth of permanent placements quickens
The number of candidates placed in permanent roles increased in London for the second successive month in September. Moreover, the rate of expansion was sharp, having quickened from August to a 16-month high. The rise in the capital was also faster than the UK average. Survey respondents widely commented on stronger demand for staff.
Marked increase in contract billings
The rate of expansion in contract billings also accelerated at the end of the third quarter, and was at a three-month high. More than 37% of panellists reported a rise in contract staff billings, with some opting to use contract staff in the absence of permanent candidates.

Staff Availability

Steep decline in permanent staff availability
London recruitment companies signalled a further substantial fall in permanent staff availability. This was despite the pace of reduction easing to a five-month low. The decline in permanent candidate numbers in the capital was slightly weaker than the UK average.
Faster reduction in short-term candidates
As has been the case in each of the past 62 months, the number of candidates for contract positions decreased in September. The pace of reduction was marked and faster than that seen in the previous month. That said, candidate numbers fell at a slower pace in London than across the UK as a whole.

Pay Pressures

Permanent salaries
A combination of rising demand for staff and low candidate availability led to a sharp increase in permanent starting salaries during September. Furthermore, the rate of inflation was the fastest since May 2015, having accelerated strongly from the previous month.
Contract pay rates
The pace of increase in contract pay rates also quickened in the capital during September and was the sharpest for five months. The rise in contract pay in London was faster than the UK average for the first time since March.

Regional Comparisons

Staff appointments
The UK recorded a marked increase in permanent placements during September, led by a strong expansion in London. The capital was the only English region to see a faster increase in placements than in August, with more modest growth recorded elsewhere.
Growth of contract billings quickened in the UK at the end of the third quarter. By region, the strongest increase was in the Midlands, closely followed by London where the rate of expansion accelerated sharply. The North of England was the only region to see a slower rise than in August.
Candidate availability
The rate of decline in permanent candidate availability in the UK remained substantial in September, and was broadly in line with that seen in August. The South of England posted the fastest fall in candidate numbers, with the slowest decline in the North.
September saw the steepest fall in contract candidates in the UK since last November. Faster declines were seen in both the South of England and London, with the sharpest reduction seen in the former.
Pay Pressures
Permanent starting salaries rose in the UK at a substantial pace, and one that was the steepest in almost three-and-ahalf years. Sharp increases were registered across all four English regions covered by the survey, led by the South. The North of England was the only area to record a slower rise in permanent starting salaries.
A faster rise in contract pay rates was also registered in September, driven by a marked acceleration in the rate of inflation in the capital. The North of England saw by far the slowest increase in short-term pay.

About Langley James
Langley James was founded in 1999 by James Toovey, a highly respected recruitment industry professional.  James wanted to provide something unique: a bespoke recruitment service which was founded on service excellence.  With offices in London and Chester, we are now providing our recruitment services throughout the world and over the last 18 years have worked with some of the most respected companies.

The average time form taking a role…
– and Delivering a Qualified Shortlist of Candidates          3 days
– and First Confirmed Interview                                             5 days
– and Confirmed Placement                                                     8 days

To find out why so many companies turn to Langley James for support in fulfilling their IT recruitment needs, call and speak to one of our specialist consultants today on 0207 788 6600.

In conjunction with: Markit and sponsored by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation.