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Dan Barfoot

UK jobs market continued to lose momentum in June – CMD Recruitment

The UK jobs market continued to lose momentum in June as vacancies increased at the weakest rate in more than a year, according to a new report by accountants KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

The monthly Report on Jobs found that the measure of permanent staff hiring fell sharply from 59.2 in May to 54.8 – the seventh decline in consecutive months.

Although the measure remained above the 50 threshold for growth, it was the lowest reading in 16 months.

The survey showed that vacancies increased at their slowest pace since March 2021, and starting salaries were at their weakest since August for permanent workers and since July for temps.

The availability of candidates shrank by the most in three months, in part because of employees’ hesitancy to switch jobs at a time of economic uncertainty.

Claire Warnes, head of education, skills and productivity at KPMG UK, said: “The apparent buoyancy of the jobs market overall continues to mask some increasingly concerning trends.

“Firstly, the fluctuations in demand for permanent and temporary workers in some sectors may be showing a sustained downward trend, as it becomes clear that current economic pressures are impacting employers’ confidence to grow.

“Secondly, the supply of candidates in all sectors continues to decline, with the rate of contraction accelerating to the quickest for three months in June.

“Added to that, competition for candidates pervades all sectors with employers offering financial incentives to retain talent, so increasing wage inflation.

“This latest data could be signalling that the UK jobs market may be more fragile than it seems.”

Commenting on the findings of the survey, Dan Barfoot operations manager at CMD Recruitment, which has offices in Devizes, Melksham, Calne and Bath, said: “With summer holidays fast approaching we have certainly seen a slow down on candidate activity, and this is the norm for this time of year and we normally see activity return to normal from the second week of September.

“There is still an ongoing shortage of part-time and school hours roles, as with remote working this has seen many people actually being able to move to full-time work patterns completing their core hours when possible.

“We have seen some companies starting to ring for advice on increments for the forecast energy prices rises, and also asking what other companies are doing.

“The temporary labour pool still seems to be sparse, as with so many permanent roles being open this is most people’s preferred route.

“A buoyant job market does continue, but is forecasted to slow later this year so at present it’s still about securing talent fast, and perhaps paying above market rate.”

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