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Post-Brexit pay cuts – but plenty of opportunities for job hunters

Salaries seem to be on the slide post-Brexit; however, recruitment is on the up

This is according to a recent survey by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo). It seems that companies are cautious about committing to full-time staff in the current climate of uncertainty that the EU referendum result has created throughout the UK; therefore, they are meeting their staffing requirements through the use of contract recruitment agents.

The future is looking good for finance professionals happy to work on contract, with the survey revealing that the demand for contract finance people jumped 21% in July 2016 compared with the same time last year. They can also look forward to a healthier pay packet, with salaries in the finance sector rising by 3.6%.

Other professionals seeking contract roles may not be so lucky, with the survey finding that contract positions outside finance shrunk by 2%.

People seeking permanent employment will not find much change from last year in terms of the number of job opportunities available, with APSCo finding a small increase of 0.2%. Whilst finance specialists may well be pleased with their 3.6% pay rise, people in other sectors will be finding that the salaries on offer are less than last July – smaller by between 0.8% and 2.4%.

APSCo identified a drop of 0.8%, while jobs search engine Adzuna published its own data showing the average salary dropping from £33,505 to £32,688; in real terms, this 2.4% reduction is a drop of 3% due to the effect of inflation. The average worker can therefore expect to be £1,000 worse off.

There are a two groups in which the pay outlook is even worse. Graduate salary offers are currently 4.3% less than they were last year and people working in London are likely to be offered 2.9% less than they would have been offered last year.

Doug Monro, co-founder of Adzuna, suggests that the data indicates a lack of confidence in the future, with the caution that companies must be feeling expressed by lower wage offers. Companies do not feel able to commit to high salaries in the uncertain world in which the UK suddenly finds itself.

At least there is still plenty of work available. There had been some speculation that Brexit would have a negative impact on jobs; however, the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics has revealed that that the unemployment figure is still below 5%, at 4.9%. This is the lowest rate since the 2008 recession and good news for job hunters.

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