New figures from Adecco suggest that billings for both temporary/contracting and permanent staff increased significantly towards the end of the first quarter of 2013.

Advertised vacancies soared by an astonishing 32% in the banking and finance sector, making it top for rising demand. The sales sector and the marketing, advertising and PR sector also put in noteworthy performances, with billings increasing by 25% and 20% respectively.

The end of the quarter stands in marked contrast to the start, when available roles plummeted abruptly, possibly because firms and departments were adjusting to new budgets. Between March and April, recruitment activity for new posts rallied considerably – almost certainly because the end of the financial year had enabled firms to gauge whether they really had the budgets available to hire new personnel. The rise in vacancies surprised observers, and appears to suggest a healthy jobs market.

On a sourer note, Umbrella Company techies might have been a little disappointed: IT put in the weakest performance in regards to hiring activity, with a somewhat underwhelming 5% increase in billings. At least it was not a reversal, and the overall picture of vacancies rising across the board is surely an encouraging one.

Adecco’s managing director, Steven Kirkpatrick, said: “The impressive increase in vacancies seen across all industries is undoubtedly excellent news for candidates. This quarter does however reflect the fluid nature of the market, which is prone to change. Whilst candidates can feel positive that increased vacancies should provide them with a greater choice of opportunities, it is important they remain alert in their job search.”

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