November 2021 saw starting salaries shoot up at a record rate while permanent recruitment levels also grew sharply, according to the latest Report on Jobs, by KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).
The research also found that permanent starting salaries, permanent hires and temporary wages have all risen every month since March 2021.
The survey, which polled 400 UK recruitment consultancies, found that recruiters attributed the rise to a growing demand for staff, but that talent shortages had affected companies’ ability to fill vacancies. Relatedly, temporary appointments had also increased, particularly in London.
49% of survey respondents said they’d noticed a fall in the availability of permanent staff. Although the report showed that both permanent and temporary staff ability continued to decline, the decreases in November were the lowest for six months.
With demand for workers running so far ahead of supply, and the labour market looking set to remain tight for some time, the current trend is not sustainable and will need to be addressed through upskilling, improving transport links and increasing labour market flexibility. The government must invest in skills development, boost employer investment by making the apprenticeship levy more flexible, and support employers in hiring overseas.
This is good news for jobseekers, as companies are increasing pay in a bid to attract and retain more staff. However, employers will also need to offer as much flexibility as possible and improve opportunities for training, development and progression in order to compete for scarce talent.