Strengthening labour market polarised by growing tail of long-term unemployed
Commenting on the ONS Labour Market statistics released today, Gerwyn Davies, Labour Market Adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), comments: “A quarterly rise of more than 150,000 employees offers the strongest evidence for some time that the jobs market might be gathering genuine momentum, with growth now being driven by firms rather than the self-employed. Almost every economic indicator is tentatively improving; with redundancies falling, vacancies rising and increases in basic pay edging to a level close to the current rate of inflation. However, with around a third of this increase in employment being taken up with temporary work, the figures also highlight the uncertainty still felt by many employers.
“Also interesting to note is the reversal of the recent trend in the proportion of migrant and UK born workers filling vacancies. Recent quarters had seen UK-born workers fare less well in relation to non-UK born workers. However, three quarters of the employment increase is now being taken up by UK-born workers, which suggests that the government’s jobs search requirements are working.
“The only cloud on the government’s horizon is the growing tail of long-term unemployed. All eyes will now therefore be on Work Programme providers’ task of bridging the gap between the demands of employers and the employability skills of the long-term unemployed”.