Edinburgh-based Peace Recruitment Group has revealed that its “trades and labour department” unit has doubled in size over the last six months as it taps into a construction sector jobs boom.
It comes hot on the heels of the firm revealing that its turnover has trebled from £2 million to £6m since it became the first recruitment company in the UK to join the Institute of Customer Service in late 2015.
Tamara Jaberu, a director at Peace who founded the trades and labour unit in 2012, said: “The construction sector in Scotland is definitely in a good place right now; more work is coming into the market and employers are looking to hire.”
She added: “The major challenge we are facing in trades and labour just now is a shortage of candidates. When I started the department back in 2012, clients had their pick of good quality candidates. However, now this has almost spun on its head and its the skilled candidates who now hold most of the power.”
Jaberu’s comments came as a study published today said that about four in every five UK businesses have seen their costs increase this year through changes in employment legislation.
The British Chambers of Commerce’s (BCC) annual workforce survey of more than 1,400 businesses, held in partnership with Middlesex University London, reveals that pensions auto-enrolment, the national living wage and the apprenticeship levy have increased the cost base of businesses.
The report notes that this could lead to reduced opportunities for investment and wage growth.
According to the findings, a fifth of businesses have seen costs increase from the introduction of the apprenticeship levy, and 8 per cent from the immigration skills charge.
Jane Gratton, head of business environment and skills at the BCC, said: “Businesses are under increasing pressure from the burden of employment costs, and this will influence the choices they make and outcomes for employees.”