East Anglia: Region continuing to set the pace on job creation, says Manpower survey
The East of England is continuing to lead the way in terms of job creation, according to the last quarterly survey by recruitment company Manpower.
The survey score of plus 13 recorded in the region, a figure equalled only by London, continues a year-long improvement in the East’s jobs market, and is well ahead of the national average of plus five.
The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey was based on responses from 2,101 UK employers about whether they intend to hire additional workers or reduce the size of their workforce in the coming economic quarter.
Despite the consistent improvement in the East, however, Manpower says the picture for other regions remains for mixed, with their job prospects tending to diminish the further away they are from London.
“The East is fast becoming the benchmark for the rest of the country when it comes to job creation, delivering consistently high hiring sentiments quarter after quarter,” said Jason Greaves, operations director at Manpower UK.
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“The region has always been strong in the finance and commercial sectors which continue to drive job growth and we are placing ever more candidates in these sectors throughout the region.
“An area of growth this quarter has been building merchants, with a particular surge coming from lorry loader requirements being driven by the home improvement sector, which nods towards the growth we are seeing on a national level in the construction sector.
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“However, as we are starting to see an increase in vacancies in skilled roles, specifically for engineering and design, there does appear in the latest survey included the South West on plus nine, the West Midlands on plus eight, the South East on plus six and the East Midlands on plus five.
However, the figure fell to just plus two in the North West while the North East recorded the only negative regional score in England, minus 2%.
Broken down by sector, Manpower said that construction had shown the biggest improvement.
“This is vital because the abysmal performance of construction has been a huge drag on the whole UK economy, and is one of the main reasons we’ve had a double dip recession,” it added.
“We’re starting to see rising demand for skills across the board, particularly in skilled trades and engineers.”
Manpower also said there were signs of life on the beleaguered high street, such as growth in the convenience store sector.