Call to help employers as half report having hard-to-fill vacancies

Almost half of employers report having vacancies that are hard to fill, and more than a quarter expect these to increase in the next six months, according to new research out today.

The latest quarterly labour market outlook from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the professional body for HR and people-development, reveals responses to a survey conducted in September of more than 1,000 employers about their hiring, pay and redundancy intentions for the last quarter of 2021.

The proportion with hard-to-fill vacancies jumped to 47 per cent from 39 per cent, with hard-to-fill vacancies most prevalent in construction, healthcare and public administration and defence.

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The CIPD says the proportion of employers with hard-to-fill vacancies has jumped to 47 per cent from 39 per cent. Picture: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images.

About seven in ten of those surveyed said they planned to recruit in the three months to December 2021, with intentions at their highest since the onset of the pandemic, and one in ten aims to make redundancies, down from 13 per cent last quarter. The net employment intentions figure is now +38, up from +32 last quarter.

The CIPD also said employers have adopted a variety of tactics in a bid to combat recruitment difficulties; almost half have raised wages over the past six months, for example.

The report is calling for a temporary job mobility scheme for young EU nationals, which it said could help counter some of the shortages, particularly for low-skilled roles.

Gerwyn Davies, senior labour market adviser for the CIPD, said: “More business support is required from government to help employers increase their capability to invest in skills and create better quality and more productive jobs. This is essential if the UK economy has any hope of transitioning to a high-skill, high-wage economy.”

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