March saw the UK jobs market challenged once again, with a drop in the availability of both permanent and temporary positions across the majority of disciplines. There was a significant decline in the number of advertised permanent vacancies at both the general staffing level, and particularly across the legal sector. The public sector also showed a dip, as opportunities remain scarce.
Elsewhere, the market remained fairly steady, with only minor reductions in permanent hiring activity.
March marked a decided fallout for temporary and contract recruitment across many sectors; particularly within the HR and telecoms industries. In areas where growth was recorded, it was counterbalanced by a drop in permanent recruitment — an effect that was mirrored in areas showing growth in permanent hiring, by a comparative fallout in temporary activity.
Whilst the banking and financial services sector suffered a drop of 4% in temporary and contract requirements, permanent activity experienced comparative growth of 4%; suggesting renewed long-term market confidence.
It was a similar story for the media industry, which saw minor growth in permanent hiring, but a drop in temporary activity.
Overall, the UK recruitment market looked bleak throughout March; with all other sectors seeing fallout on both the temporary and permanent side, and retail suffering most notably. But with slow recovery in permanent hiring across such key disciplines as finance and media, there is hope that the next few months could hold greater levels of stability.