Recruitment stays steady following referendum, but salaries on offer take a knock

Hayley Kirton
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There are more opportunities to get a new job, but the pay isn't quite as pretty (Source: Getty)

Professional hiring has remained sturdy despite the referendum result, but salaries on offer are no longer so favourable, figures out today show.

The Association of Professional Staffing Companies (Apsco) study found permanent vacancies inched up by 0.2 per cent in July compared with the year before, although contract vacancies dipped by two per cent.

However, the number of contract roles on offer for finance and accounting jobs leapt up 21 per cent.

"It seems that an increasingly flexible workforce is being utilised to keep the wheels in motion until there is greater certainty around what the UK's future relationship with the EU will look like," said Ann Swain, chief executive of Apsco. "Until then, the professional recruitment sector will continue to provide talent to firms' immediate and short-term needs."

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But while it may have been good news for jobhunters, it's not so good for their paypackets. Apsco found salaries slipped by 0.8 per cent, although financial services again bucked the trend, with salaries increasing by 3.6 per cent.

Separate research by jobs search engine Adzuna, also released today, found the average salary on offer in the pool of jobs it studied had dropped 2.4 per cent in July compared with the year before, going from £33,505 to £32,688.

To add insult to injury, Adzuna also calculated advertised wages in real terms had dropped by three per cent, meaning any jobhunters swiping roles now would be over £1,000 worse off compared with a year ago.

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"Jobseekers might not be jumping for joy," said Doug Monro, co-founder of Adzuna. "After the shock of Brexit, a new Prime Minister and lower interest rates, rising inflation has now entered the ring.

"Not only are advertised salaries falling, but inflation is hitting workers hardest and where it really hurts – their wages."

Londoners looking for a good deal fared worse than the country as a whole, as advertised salaries dipped by 2.9 per cent in the capital.

Meanwhile, those fresh out of university might be feeling like they wished they'd skipped the gap year, as graduate salaries on offer fell by 4.3 per cent to £23,609 in July, compared with £24,682 the year before.

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"Companies are cautious about the future due to Brexit and so have less money to offer high starting salaries. It's also hard to guess how many workers they will need," Monro added.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics released earlier this month surprised some, as the unemployment rate maintained its post-recession low of 4.9 per cent. It had been speculated the figure might creep up to five per cent.

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