Permanent placements rise at fastest pace in seven months

Permanent placements rising fast

The REC and KPMG Report on Jobs provides comprehensive guide to the UK labour market.

Also on

Permanent placements rise at fastest pace in seven months

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies.

Faster growth of staff appointments 

Permanent staff placements increased at a stronger rate in November, with the rate of expansion quickening to a seven-month high. Temporary/contract staff billings also rose at a faster pace, with growth the sharpest in five months.  

Vacancy growth eases but still strong 

Demand for staff continued to rise in November. Although easing to a 29-month low, the rate of expansion remained marked overall.   

Candidate availability falls at sharper rate

The availability of staff for both permanent and temporary/contract roles fell at sharp and accelerated rates in November.  Shortages of candidates for a range of skill-sets were reported by panellists.  

Pay growth remains marked 

Permanent staff salaries continued to rise in November. The latest increase was again strong, with panellists citing competition for qualified staff. Temporary/contract staff hourly pay rates rose at the fastest pace in three months, although growth remained slower than that seen for permanent employees.  

Regional and sector variation

Growth of permanent placements was broad-based across the monitored English regions during November, with the fastest rate of expansion signalled in the North. 

Midlands-based agencies reported the fastest growth of temp billings during November, while the slowest rise was signalled by those in the South.  

November data signalled that demand for staff remained considerably stronger in the private sector than the public sector, with private sector permanent employees seeing the strongest growth overall. In contrast, public sector permanent staff saw a decline in demand for their services. 

All nine categories of permanent staff registered increased demand in November. The strongest growth was reported for IT & Computing workers, closely followed by Accounting/Financial and Executive/Professional staff. 

Nursing/Medical/Care remained in top spot in the temp staff demand ‘league table’ in November, just ahead of Accounting/Financial, IT & Computing and Engineering. Construction was the only sector where a fall was signalled, albeit marginal. 

REC chief executive Kevin Green, says: 

“Businesses are confident, with more people finding permanent jobs each month and pay increasing – this is a great way to cap a bumper year for the UK labour market. 

“Such is the demand for staff that the availability of people to fill temporary roles has fallen at the sharpest rate in 18 years. In part this has been driven by businesses taking on additional staff for the Christmas period. 

“In some sectors, skill shortages could make this a sad Christmas. For example, more than two thirds of recruiters that supply drivers said that a shortage of candidates will cause chaos for shops and delayed deliveries for shoppers. 

“As we look ahead to 2016 the data suggests that the public sector is starting to cut its recruitment activity as austerity bites, while the private sector is still hunting for skills and talent.” 

Bernard Brown, Partner at KPMG, comments: 

“November saw a further tightening of labour market conditions, with few sectors remaining immune from the effects of ongoing skills shortages.  Wages in the construction sector rose yet again, with the ONS reporting weekly earnings surging by 6%, double the average pay rise awarded across the rest of the economy. 

“Recruiters will hope the annual influx of job hunters in January will reinvigorate the market and replenish the rapidly diminishing pool of available talent.”


For media enquiries, please contact: Erfan Hussain, Head of the Press Office

T: +44 (0) 207 694 4208

M: + 44 (0)77 6804 3447


Follow us on twitter: @kpmguk 

KPMG Press Office: +44 (0)207 694 8773

About KPMG

KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 12,000 partners and staff.  The UK firm recorded a turnover of £1.9 billion in the year ended September 2014. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 155 countries and has 162,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity.  Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such. 

Connect with us


Request for proposal



KPMG’s new-look website

KPMG’s new-look website