Job prospects have declined sharply in Yorkshire and Humberside, according to Manpower, the global leader in contingent and permanent recruitment workforce solutions.
While the Employment Outlook in the region is still positive, it has taken a tumble of eight percentage points on the previous quarter and now stands at its lowest level for more than a year.
The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is based on responses from 2,103 UK employers.
It asks whether employers intend to hire additional workers or reduce the size of their workforce in the coming quarter. It is the most comprehensive, forward-looking employment survey of its kind and is used as a key economic statistic by both the Bank of England and the UK government.
“Despite the fall in optimism compared to last quarter, we shouldn’t forget that the jobs Outlook is still in positive territory and the market remains buoyant in Yorkshire and Humberside.
“Sheffield and Hull are particularly positive, although in the Leeds area we’re finding that most roles are coming up outside the city itself.
“And believe it or not, as many candidates are still cautious about looking for new roles despite the improving economy, many employers are struggling to fill vacancies.
“For example, we’re seeing skills shortages across engineering and IT roles, as well as jobs requiring secretarial skills or sales experience,” says Amanda White, operations manager at Manpower.
“Gaining transferable skills always helps those who are out of work or looking for the next opportunity on the jobs ladder.
“Research is also crucial. Ahead of an interview, we always encourage candidates to take the time to find out about the company and the role, and what relevant transferable skills they have.”
The national picture in early 2015 is positive, following 2014’s jobs bonanza, when we saw the highest level of job creation in 40 years.
The national Seasonally Adjusted Net Employment indicates that, with an Outlook of +7 per cent, 2015 will begin even more optimistically than the fourth quarter of 2014, when the Outlook was +6 per cent.
Britain’s biggest companies are set to lead the job creation charge in early 2015 and, with an Outlook of +21 per cent, more of the UK’s largest employers are planning to take on staff than at any point in the last decade.
Many big businesses built up large cash reserves in the downturn. Now that confidence is returning they have money to invest in infrastructure and growing their workforces.
The run up to Christmas has seen some of the UK’s biggest and best-known companies taking on staff in their thousands as they prepare for the seasonal rush.
One good example is Royal Mail, which is recruiting 19,000 extra workers to deliver the nation’s Christmas gifts.
Across the regions, there are marked positive increases in the North East and South West, with the North East boasting the brightest Outlook among the regions, at +16 per cent, its best showing for seven years and the South West following closely behind with an Outlook of +15 per cent.
Away from these high flying regions there is a more mixed picture across the UK. Wales (+4 per cent) rose by three points, while the Scottish Outlook has continued to fall from a high of +8 per cent in Q3 2014 to +2 per cent this quarter. Northern Ireland is the only region in negative territory, with its Outlook falling back down to -4 per cent after a surprise leap into positive numbers last quarter.