Optimism among UK employers has hit an eight-year high, with all sectors expecting a post-Covid jobs recovery, according to a new survey.
Jobs in the public, private and voluntary sector are all set to surge and pay prospects have also improved, according to the latest labour market outlook report from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and recruiter Adecco.
The report’s net employment intentions balance, which measures the difference between employers expecting to add jobs and those planning to cut them, hit a score of 27 for the second quarter of 2021, compared with 11 in the first quarter.
Confidence spans sectors
Employer optimism in the private and voluntary sectors reached scores of 28, while the public sector came in at 22.
These scores are stronger than at any time since the survey began in February 2013.
Hospitality and retail sectors also saw optimism from employers as lockdown restrictions eased from today.
More than two-thirds of hospitality firms said they intend to hire more staff in the coming months.
Basic pay expectations are also set to increase from one to two per cent in the next year, with the private sector set for a 1.5 to two per cent increase.
However, pay expectations in the public sector in the next 12 months stand at just 0.9 per cent.
‘Reason to cheer’
The survey also found that 64 per cent of businesses plan to recruit staff in the three months to June, while 12 per cent expect job cuts during the same period.
Gerwyn Davies, senior labour market advisor at the CIPD, said that more jobs and improved pay should “give us all reason to cheer”, but warned a solid jobs recovery must be focused on better jobs, not just more jobs.
“To offset the emerging threat of recruitment difficulties, employers should be reviewing not just their recruitment practices, but also the quality of work they offer – such as employment conditions, the possibility of promotion, training opportunities and the right balance of flexibility and security. There’s more to good work than raising wages.”