The overwhelming majority of UK employers plan to maintain or increase their use of temporary/contracting staff over the coming year, the latest JobsOutlook survey from the REC reveals.

Over the next quarter, 94% of the 600 employers polled said they intended to maintain or increase their contracting and temporary headcounts at current levels, with 60% maintaining current levels and 34% planning to increase them. Figures for the coming year reveal that 96% plan to maintain or expand their contracting and temporary staff (66% and 30% respectively).

Moreover, 97% plan to maintain or increase permanent headcounts over the next three months, which is made up of 46% intending to maintain and 51% intending to increase. 98% planned to do so over the next 12 months, with 55% maintaining current levels and 43% increasing them.

Despite the welcome news for Umbrella Company Employees and other professional freelancers, the REC also found that a massive 71% of employers were not offering apprenticeships to young jobseekers, despite plans to expand their workforce.

REC chief executive Kevin Green warned that employers who fail to offer apprenticeships should be concerned about how they will secure the talent they need in the short- and long-term. He said: “The REC is acutely aware of the importance of engaging young people and is working to ensure that the recruitment industry can access talented young apprentices. The government must do more to support employers to take on young workers and promote schemes such as the Youth Contract, which – according to our previous research – only 18% of employers were aware of and would use.”

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