Umbrella Company Employees and others contracting in the City’s financial institutions have seen a 12% rise in the number of contract roles available between Q4 2014 and Q1 2015, the latest Robert Walters City Job Index reveals.

While still reflecting strong demand for contractors, the 9,015 short-term professional positions on offer in Q1 is down 10% on the same time last year as confidence returns to the City and employers begin to hire more permanent staff. Financial services firms created 10,980 new permanent roles in Q1, up a dramatic 25% between Q4 2014 and Q1 2015 and an even more impressive 32% on the same time last year.

An ongoing skills shortage was also evident in the findings. During March alone there were 9,870 new jobs and contacts on offer but only around 6,200 candidates seeking new roles, which boils down to 1.6 available jobs for every candidate seeking a new opportunity.

Robert Walters’ MD for London and the South East, Colin Loth, said that despite the obvious uncertainty in the run up to the general election on 7th May, the City hirers were demonstrating a growing sense of optimism.

He added: “Candidates continue to have a rich choice of job opportunities in the City, but for employers there is stiff competition to find the best talent. As candidates begin to feel more confident about career stability we expect the number of active job seekers to increase; however, following several years of cut backs in training and development, the issue of skills shortages is set to remain for some time.”

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