Belfast Telegraph

Shortage of potential recruits despite a rise in job vacancies

Job vacancies have continued to increase but a shortage of candidates is emerging, suggesting a "core group" of long-term unemployed unable to find work, according to a new report.

Demand for staff increased last month in private firms as well as the public sector, said the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG.

Their survey of 400 recruitment consultancies found that the availability of permanent and temporary staff fell at the sharpest rate for a decade.

Starting salaries for permanent jobs increased last month, said the report.

REC's director of policy Tom Hadley said: "The trend of growth in people finding jobs across all industrial sectors and regions continues. Starting salaries and how come yhourly pay rates are up as employers battle to entice the talent they need.

"However, worsening candidate shortages mean that the number of people available to fill both temporary and permanent jobs is falling at the sharpest rate in nearly a decade.

"We have a core group of long-term unemployed people whose skills don't fit with current vacancies and are unable to access the jobs market.

"As well as upskilling UK workers, the Government needs to take a joined up approach to immigration. A priority is addressing the restrictions on visas for highly skilled workers, which would allow businesses to access the people they need to grow and create jobs for more British workers."

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