Recruiters and hiring managers need to prepare for a long, harsh winter as advertised salaries plummet and vacancies stagnate, according to data from job board Adzuna.
The number of advertised vacancies in the UK has taken a tumble in recent months, with the latest data showing a fall of 1.4% month-on-month. This represents a 3.1% decline year on year.
Even more worryingly, advertised salaries are on their fifth consecutive month of negative growth. While the longer-term trend is still positive, these developments threaten to derail the wage recovery the UK economy experienced in the first half of 2018.
Compounding the issue, competition for roles is at an all-time low since Adzuna started compiling their stats in 2012. The researchers found there are currently three vacancies per jobseeker, indicating the fight for talent is going to be very fierce over the coming months.
“It’s worrying to see salaries declining once again, just as real wages were looking like recovering back towards where they were in 2012,” said Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna. “Given the competition for jobs is at an all-time low, we’d expect salaries to rise as companies compete for the remaining top talent.
“That said, I am buoyed by the fact that over 180,000 British workers will see a bump in their pay from this month, as the ‘real living wage’ rises to £9 per hour across the country.”
Hunter suggested that Brexit is having an impact on the health of the U.K job market. “Adzuna’s data clearly shows vacancies and wages feeling the pressure, and interestingly, migration patterns for jobs look to be changing as application rates for British jobs drop from workers on the continent,” he explained.
Rob Johnson, Managing Director at Global Resourcing, previously told Recruitment Grapevine that managing a candidate drought requires a strong understanding of your industry.
“You can only develop this through having longevity in a market and specialist recruiters covering niche verticals, so they can develop a deep understanding of the market,” he said. “You need to be a specialist to succeed in the rapidly changing world of recruitment and advent of social connectivity.”
And Daniel Corner, co-Founder of online recruitment agency ThatRecruit.com, said there’s no shame in asking a client if they could change the benefits package or increase salaries in times of candidate shortages.
“I think it’s our responsibility as a recruitment business to make clients aware that when they are recruiting for the best possible talent - they are always going to be competing,” he said. “The vast majority of clients will be receptive to suggestions as to how they be deemed more attractive to candidates.” Check what competitors are offering – if it’s higher, you have more leverage.