2015: Time for realistic optimism?


According to a recent survey carried out by CBI and Accenture, 50% of UK employers plan to recruit to grow their businesses in 2015 suggesting that there is continuing confidence in the economic recovery which is good news for employees and companies alike.

The employment trends survey found that 73% of businesses are keen to offer young people (16-24 year olds) job opportunities, although concerns were highlighted that many young people are poorly prepared for working life.

The results were also encouraging for those looking to start their career with an apprenticeship, with 33% of businesses confirming that they would look to recruit additional apprentices in 2015. Additionally, the figures for graduate recruitment were up by an increase of 10% with 30% of the businesses that took part confirming that they would be increasing their graduate recruitment in 2015.

The survey also found that 43% of UK businesses are planning a pay rise for their employees at least in line with the Retail Price Index (RPI), with a further 12% of companies planning to award more than an RPI increase (an increase of 7% from 2013).

Less positive is the 61% of businesses who highlighted that employment regulations is still a significant burden and the lack of suitable skills was identified by 63% of businesses as a significant threat to UK business competitiveness.

Interestingly, 95% of the companies see flexible working as either vital or important to the competitiveness of the UK labour market. The survey highlights that flexible working provides significant benefits, both for the employees and the business, which should be safeguarded.

The survey surmises that the economic downturn meant many businesses did not actively look for new employees and that many employees stayed in their current jobs for financial security reasons. Therefore, as the economy has started to recover, businesses in the UK are becoming more confident in taking on more employees at all skill level and individuals have also become more confident in looking to move jobs or progress in their current company.

If you are a business looking to expand your workforce, manage flexible working arrangements or take on apprentices and need advice on employment issues, please visit our Legal Resource Centre or make an appointment to discuss your requirements with me [Julie Taylor].

To find out more about our employment division click here to see our latest video.

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