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The bad news in the good news

AS a leading independent recruitment agency, we continue to closely monitor the effects of an unusually low unemployment rate, particularly here in Northamptonshire where the level is even lower than the national average.

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) estimates that the UK unemployment rate is 3.8 per cent, the lowest since October to December 1974, with this dropping dramatically for Northamptonshire where it is estimated to be less that two per cent – yes two per cent!

Paul Hooper, owner of Impact Recruitment said: “It’s interesting how employment has avoided the uncertainty of Brexit, which could have caused employers to rethink their growth and recruitment plans. These record-breaking unemployment levels might suggest that only a recession-inducing hard Brexit is likely to have a noticeably negative impact on the UK’s employment situation.”

However, what is seemingly a good news story on the surface could be masking potential problems:

* Over reliance on workers rather than technology – in an effort to meet demands businesses may have hired workers rather than investing in productivity-boosting technology. The Bank of England reports that business investment fell in every quarter last year potentially limiting future growth opportunities.

* People working for longer – against a backdrop of the population being at a record high, the ONS also revealed that the number of people retiring dropped to the lowest level in 25 years, probably due to changes in the state pension and fewer women retiring between the ages of 60 and 65 years.

* Inadequate pay – pay rates appear to have stagnated in a time of economic growth making it important that employers review pay scales and reward. The good news for employees is that there are early signs this is starting to happen.

* Candidate demand outweighs supply – a reduced labour pool means finding the right candidate is harder and requires more specialised search strategies, making a recruitment agency the most effective solution in most instances.

Paul Hooper said: “Permanent vacancies are growing as candidates become ever harder to find, across commercial and industrial sectors. We focus on quality rather than quantity and by deploying carefully tailored search strategies, often proactive approaches to people already in employment, we are able to maintain our high levels of client service and candidate placements.”

If you want to find out how Impact Recruitment Services could improve your workforce strategies, get in touch at or call Northampton branch on 01604 239555 or Wellingborough branch on 01933 440285.

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