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The quarterly Labour Market Outlook, produced in partnership with the The Adecco Group UK & Ireland is one of the most authoritative employment indicators in the UK and provides forward-looking labour market data and analysis on employers’ recruitment, redundancy and pay intentions.

The Adecco Group UK&I and its brands are part of the Adecco Group, the world’s leading HR solutions partner. As a Group, we provide more than 700,000 people with permanent and flexible employment every day. With more than 34,000 employees in 60 countries – 3,100 in the UK&I – we transform the world of work one job at a time. Our colleagues serve more than 100,000 organisations with the talent, HR services and cutting-edge technology they need to succeed in an ever-changing global economy. As a Fortune Global 500 company, we lead by example, creating shared value that meets social needs while driving business innovation. Our culture of inclusivity, fairness and teamwork empowers individuals and organisations, fuels economies, and builds better societies. These values resonate with our employees, who voted us number 5 on the Great Place to Work® - World’s Best Workplaces 2018 list. We make the future work for everyone. 

The Adecco Group is based in Zurich, Switzerland. Adecco Group AG is registered in Switzerland (ISIN: CH0012138605) and listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (ADEN). The Group is powered by nine lead brands: Adecco, Modis, Badenoch & Clark, Spring Professional, Lee Hecht Harrison, Pontoon, Adia, General Assembly and YOSS.  

The Adecco Group UK&I’s head office is located in London, UK. We have 11 brands, including the Adecco Group UK&I, Adecco, Adia, Ajilon, Badenoch & Clark, Modis, Office Angels, Penna, Pontoon, Roevin and Spring.

Labour Market Outlook: Autumn 2019

This Autumn, employment confidence remains high. Whilst uncertainty around the previous Brexit deadline of 31 October intensified throughout the quarter, businesses expressed an intention to take a business as usual approach to staff resourcing. 

The proportion of employers expecting to increase staff levels has grown, particularly in the public sector, and pay expectations remain steady. Despite uncertainty, this shows that orders still need to be filled and talent pipelines staffed.  

Increased confidence among public sector employers suggests that constraints on pay in the sector have eased. Pay expectations in the sector for the next 12 months have increased, and more employers are prepared to raise salaries in response to recruitment and retention difficulties. 

Download the full report and the data tables below:


Labour demand

Demand for labour among employers remains strong. This quarter’s net employment balance – the difference between the proportion of employers expecting to increase or decrease staff levels – grew from +18 to +22. 

Employment confidence saw a particularly large increase in the public sector, rising from +2 to +14.  

Industries that registered high confidence included construction (+38), healthcare (+30) and administrative and other service activities (+30). 

Labour supply

A number of employers have reported hiring difficulties due to an increasingly tight labour market. Just over two-in-five (43%) of the employers recorded that it’s become more difficult to fill vacancies over the last 12-months. 

67% of the organisations currently hiring report that at least some of these vacancies are proving hard-to-fill. 

Public sector employers in particular recorded recruitment difficulties. In healthcare, 75% of hiring employers recorded hard-to-fill vacancies. In public administration and defence this figure was 71%.  

Wages and salaries

Basic pay expectations for the next 12 months to August 2020 remain at 2%. Expectations in the public sector trended upwards, rising from 1.5% to 2%. However, in the private sector expectations dropped slightly – decreasing from 2.5% last quarter to 2.2% – therefore closing the gap between the sectors. 

Inflation remained the most common reason for pay increases above 2%. Other top reasons included movement in market rates and in response to recruitment and retention difficulties.

Labour Market Outlook archive

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