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Working with YouGov and in partnership with The Adecco Group UK & Ireland, the CIPD has for the first time increased the data sample collected for the Labour Market Outlook (LMO) survey for the north-west of England and Yorkshire and Humber as well as providing an all-north sample that covers the north of England in total. We compare these insights from the north of England in order to provide with the broader UK picture on some major workplace and labour market issues.

The Adecco Group UK&I is part of The Adecco Group, the world’s leading workforce solutions partner. As a global Group, we provide more than 700,000 people with permanent and flexible employment every day. With more than 33,000 employees in 60 countries – 3,000 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 2 on the Great Place to Work® - World’s Best Workplaces 2017 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 eight lead brands: Adecco, Modis, Badenoch & Clark, Spring Professional, Lee Hecht Harrison, Pontoon, Adia and YOSS.

The Adecco Group UK&I’s head office is in London, United Kingdom. We have 10 brands, including The Adecco Group UK&I, Adecco, Ajilon, Badenoch & Clark, Modis, Office Angels, Penna, Pontoon, Roevin and Spring.

Executive summary

The north of England (from here on referred to as ‘the north’) has undergone a period of economic transition and has been at the centre of many of the political shifts currently occurring in the UK. The Northern Powerhouse project (to develop the region as an integrated regional economic and decision-making hub through its constituent regions) has featured prominently in the debate around UK industrial policy and in the future of devolution.


The north has also been a major centre of pro-Brexit voting, mainly concentrated in smaller towns across the north-east (NE), north-west (NW), and Yorkshire and the Humber (Y&H). The vote was seen as a lightning conductor for discontent around issues of inequality and immigration. Much of this sentiment is rooted in the state of jobs and the labour market and general dissatisfaction with working lives as well as a lack of sustainable work in the local labour market.


In this report we focus on some key aspects that are driving labour market perceptions and outcomes across the NE, NW and Y&H. Despite these perceptions, the weight of evidence shows that migration is positive for the UK economy and labour market, including the north of England region (see Portes and Forte 2016). Broadly, migration adds to the number of jobs through ‘spillover effects’; it increases economic growth and demand for products and, except in some very rare examples, has little effect on pay or public services. CIPD evidence shows (CIPD 2018) that those workplaces with a higher proportion of EU migrant workers also offer more training and development. Furthermore, evidence from regional research shows that cities with high migration have higher rates of productivity and vice versa. While it would be naïve to misjudge or discount the depth of feeling on migration, evidence does point to its positive impact on the labour market. The CIPD will continue its work to champion skills development among existing workers and people looking to enter work, to ensure the needs of both individuals and organisations are being met.

Download the survey report

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