UK job vacancies nearing pre-pandemic levels

Lily Canter
·2-min read
Job vacancies are returning to pre-pandemic levels. Credit: Getty.
Job vacancies are returning to pre-pandemic levels. Credit: Getty.

Job adverts have hit a three-week high, nearing pre-pandemic levels, according to new industry data.

Weekly postings on job board CV-Library were up 5.1% last week. The biggest rises were in hospitality, up 69%, charity, up 59%, and design, up 53%. Vacancies in media and retail also saw a significant uplift.

But job numbers have dropped by almost 11% in the public sector and by 10% in distribution, with further decreases in administration, customer service and property employment.

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“Despite tighter restrictions being put in place by the government, we have seen growth in job adverts for the third week in a row now; suggesting that businesses are starting to find their feet amongst the chaos," said Lee Biggins, CEO of CV-Library.

Vacancies are rising in industries hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic but Biggins noted that job numbers were dipping in previously thriving sectors.

The number of jobs posted the week beginning 21 September was 70% higher than the days preceding the UK lockdown.

And the spike in COVID-19 cases does not appear to be impacting job vacancies with adverts rising by almost 18% in the East Midlands, 3% in the North West and 1.7% in London.

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“We know that COVID cases are spiking in key locations, but this doesn’t appear to have an impact on the amount of jobs that are being advertised in these areas. It’s positive to see that job numbers are headed in the right direction, and that more companies are looking to grow their workforce during a difficult time of uncertainty,” added Biggins.

But this is set against the backdrop of rising unemployment rates as companies lay off large swathes of staff. The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics have unemployment at 4.1%. Between March and August the number of people claiming unemployment benefits rose 120% to 2.7 million.