A raft of positive reports and statistics has been published during November…
Once again demand for contractors has reached a new six-year high, with figures for October, according to the latest REC/KPMG report, confounding what appears to have been a one off blip in September, when demand slightly reduced.
The report showed IT contractor demand at 62.9 (compared with 52.5 in October 2012) and said that the recruitment process for both those new to the market and those switching roles had quickened.
Commentary in the report confirmed that the trend in demand continued to push pay rates up but also repeated the warning that the IT skills gap could actually damage economic growth. Whilst the data showed increased demand across all regions and disciplines, areas specifically singled out as in short supply were: Business Analysis, Infrastructure, Development, Java, PHP, Digital Marketing and SAP services.
In a separate report, the recent CIPD Labour Market Outlook Report said that in many cases, businesses are intending to use short term contractor labour to fill the resources gap resulting from the economic recovery and the associated increased demand for goods and services, rather than hiring permanent employees.
The latest Labour Market Statistics report from the Office for National Statistics showed the number of people in full time self-employment increasing by 22,000 in the 3 months to September 2013. The CBI’s latest SME Trend survey claimed that the economic recovery appears to be finally translating into the investment and hiring plans of the UK’s small and medium sized businesses, predicting these to strengthen in 2014.
Finally, a Savills Commercial Development Activity report showed a 79-month high in commercial property construction, across all construction sectors and across all regions of the UK.