Employers pick temps over permanent staff as Covid uncertainty continues
By Matt Hall | 5th November 2020
A new UK 'Report on Jobs' survey has revealed a drop in permanent staff appointments in October, but a rise in temporary positions.
Data from the survey conducted by accountants KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) found that overall demand for staff fell modestly, driven by a renewed fall in permanent vacancies.
Widespread reports of redundancies, and fears over current job security, fuelled a further sharp rise in candidate availability. Increased labour supply, and reduced client budgets, contributed to steeper falls in starting pay for both permanent and temporary workers.
The report is compiled by IHS Markit from responses to questionnaires sent to a panel of around 400 UK recruitment and employment consultancies.
Neil Carberry, chief executive of the REC, said: "October brought a dose of realism after a quick economic bounce in the summer. While a new England-wide lockdown starts this week, similar restrictions were already in force in much of the UK last month.
"These figures show that hiring was still going on - and we believe that firms are better prepared to trade through these new restrictions than they were in March.
"Nevertheless, the outlook remains uncertain, and concerning. We face a challenging winter and temporary work will be a vital tool for keeping businesses going and people in work."
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