Chief economist at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, Dr John Philpott, has been suggesting that growth in the executive search market is set to continue due to the inability of both the private and public sector to find and retain the most skilled workers. Dr Philpott predicts that this growth will further increase from 2012 onwards.

It was at a meeting of the Association of Executive Recruiters, an event hosted by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), that Dr Philpott made his observations. His comments come at a time when the executive jobs market has weakened despite a strong start to the year.

His views, which are not shared by everyone, are actually erring on the pessimistic side of the predictions made by the Office for Budget Responsibility. Philpott stated: “We believe unemployment will continue to rise until it reaches a peak of 2.85 million during the summer of 2012. It will also take time for the private sector to be strong enough to absorb all of the public sector job losses.”

Meanwhile, the most recent survey conducted by the REC found that 67% of agencies recruiting for the public sector have seen placements drop by a fifth. Half of the cuts experienced were for supportive and administrative roles while the other half affected front line staff. The majority of agencies believe that there will be a considerable decrease in demand for temporary staff over the coming year. The REC continue to advocate for flexible working as a prime contributor to the UK’s economic recovery.

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