Businesses are currently operating in an incredibly tight labour market and are doing their best to survive amongst the cost of doing business crisis due to spiralling energy costs. The competitive labour market is impacting business’ ability to invest and grow.
According to the Office for National Statistics, the number of payroll employees in September 2022 shows a monthly increase, up 69,000 on the revised August 2022 figures, to a record 29.7 million. Since February 2020, the number of payroll employees has increased by 730,000 and the overall number of payroll employees is well above pre-pandemic levels.
The most recent figures from the Office for National Statistics suggest the unemployment rate for June to August 2022 decreased by 0.3 percentage points on the quarter to 3.5%, the lowest rate since December to February 1974. According to our latest Quarterly Economic Survey for (Q3 2022), 56% of businesses have attempted to recruit in Q3 compared to 59% in Q2. 73% of businesses reported that they experienced difficulties during the recruitment process, compared to 74% in Q2. The Quarterly Economic Survey reports 86% of businesses who have attempted to recruit are doing so for full time roles.
The ONS have also suggested growth in average total pay (including bonuses) was 6.0% and growth in regular pay (excluding bonuses) was 5.4% among employees in June to August 2022. This is the strongest growth in regular pay seen outside of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic period.
With many local businesses still experiencing challenges trying to recruit locally, in order to maintain business growth. Addressing the local and regional skills gap remains one of the Chamber’s priorities as we continue to support businesses in the months ahead.
Working in partnership with Hewett Recruitment, the Chamber of Commerce will once again produce the annual Salary & Benefits 2022/23 report. This report will benchmark the salaries and the benefits that company’s offer across the two counties in order to support businesses attract and retain staff. The report will include the minimum, maximum and average salaries of a variety of roles across the two counties. At a time when provisions for flexible working and annual leave allowance are as important to candidates as salaries, it has never been more crucial to compare the salary and benefits your business offers.