Recruitment rebounds as lockdown loosens

Improved market confidence among employers has led to the sharpest rise in permanent appointments in six years.

As the government outlined its roadmap for lifting lockdown, and with Covid-19 infections, hospitalisations and deaths all falling, temporary billings also grew at the fastest rate since 2017.

The latest UK Report on Jobs, compiled for the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and KPMG, shows that demand for workers grew rapidly in March driven by marked increases in both permanent and temporary vacancies.

Recruiting as lockdown eases

Neil Carberry, chief executive of the REC, said: “For months, we have been talking about the potential recruiters saw for a recovery in hiring as we got on with vaccinations and the lockdown did its work.

“Today’s data shows that even during lockdown, our labour market was bouncing back. The strong temporary recruitment trend of the past few months has been maintained, but with a new addition – the fastest increase in permanent job placements since 2015.

“Taken together with a long-awaited recovery in hiring in London, this is a sign that business confidence is starting to flow back, even at this early stage of unlocking.”

Key findings

  • Permanent staff appointments rebound at end of first quarter
  • Permanent staff supply declines for first time in a year

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