IT Jobs Report May – Recruitment Remains Resilient
There’s a strong suspicion that IT recruitment has remained one of the more robust industry sectors throughout the pandemic and the latest IT jobs report only seems to back this view up.
However, this upturn for IT recruitment isn’t all roses according to Clare Warnes, Head of Education and Skills at KPMG, “it’s concerning that we’re seeing a drop in candidate supply due in part to applicants needing support to adapt their skills to move from displaced sectors to those where there is more demand, such as health and care, and because the furlough scheme has reduced the pool of workers”.
The main features of last month’s reported figures seem to be as follows:
Increase in recruitment as coronavirus restrictions begin to ease
The easing of national lockdown measures and brighter outlook for the economy led to a further marked increase in recruitment activity at the start of the second quarter. Permanent placements expanded at the sharpest rate since October 1997, when the survey began, while temp billings growth remained historically strong.
Sharpest rise in vacancies for 23 years
The upturn in demand for staff gathered pace in April, with overall vacancies increasing at the quickest rate for 23 years. Permanent vacancy growth outpaced that seen for temporary roles, with the former rising at the quickest rate since March 1998 and the latter to the greatest extent since October 2014.
Supply of candidates falls markedly
After broadly stabilising in March, the availability of candidates fell in April, and at the sharpest rate since January 2020. Reduced candidate supply was often linked to ongoing pandemic-related uncertainty preventing people from seeking new roles. There were also mentions that Brexit, IR35 legislation and furlough had reduced the pool of available candidates.
Increases in both starting salaries and temp pay
Skill shortages and improved demand for staff led to further increases in starting pay for both permanent and temporary staff. Starting salary inflation hit a 14-month high, while temp pay growth improved to its best for a year-and-a-half.
The view from the North
Last month was another positive one for IT recruitment figures in the North. Permanent staff appointments grew as did temporary billings too. Does this finally look like a roadmap to recovery leading from the North to the South?
For Tech companies it even appears to have returned to pre-pandemic staffing levels and we’re even hearing the same old comments on staff availability and lack of skills. This rise in both temp and perm placements makes for a busy and positive end to 2021.
The view from the Midlands
There was a serious uptick in the number of temporary vacancies in the Midlands area and this was fuelled by a strong Tech and IT sector. So, while there is an element of uncertainty about when lockdown will end and the return to office based work (if that ever happens), the Midlands IT sector remains strong when compared to the other regions in England.
IT Jobs in Demand
Agile Project Manager