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UK salaries sky-rocket as employers struggle to fill vacancies

With candidate applications stagnating amidst Brexit uncertainty

Average salaries across the UK have risen by a staggering 30.2% since last year, as employers continue with their struggle to find the right candidates for their vacancies. That’s according to the latest job market statistics from leading independent job site, CV-Library.

Alongside this, the findings, which compared job market data from February 2019 with February 2019, found that key cities across the UK saw strong pay growth, including:

  • Liverpool (12%)
  • Edinburgh (11.5%)
  • Leeds (7.22%)
  • Cardiff (6.61%)
  • Birmingham (4.3%)

Looking at the amount of jobs being advertised, vacancies rose by a steady 4% last month, though this was almost equally matched by a 3.4% decline in candidate applications. What’s more, some of the main industries requiring the skills of EU workers are noticing the effects of Brexit discussions already, with job applications in hospitality falling by 15.3%, 7.5% in driving and 9.8% in recruitment.

Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of CV-Library, comments: “It’s not surprising that professionals are showing more caution about applying for jobs right now. With the outcome of Brexit still not confirmed, Brits want to stay safe in the knowledge that their current employer will protect them, no matter the result of the Brexit deal. And, while this can help many employers with their retention efforts, this does pose an issue for companies recruiting for new positions.

“Employers are currently under immense pressure to rethink their hiring strategies, which could be why we’ve seen an increase in salaries across the board. From our data we can see that Northern cities like Liverpool and Leeds are desperate to attract more candidates with higher salaries. This could be attributed to the fact that manufacturing is one of their prime industries and this is a sector that’s facing severe skills shortages right now.”

Looking at the bigger picture, the findings show that the UK job market has remained largely resilient. Overall, the amount of candidates registering their CV on CV-Library was up by 5.6% year-on-year, suggesting that while professionals may be feeling tentative about making their career move, many are still considering their prospects.

What’s more, certain industries which should be vulnerable actually saw an increase in application numbers, including construction (up 13.1%), engineering (up 5.9%) and tourism (up 0.9%) and engineering (up 5.9%).

Biggins concludes: “It’s certainly encouraging to note that key sectors have managed to stay relatively stable. What’s more, while it’s too early to be certain, it appears that Brexit hasn’t yet felt the devastating effects that have been speculated about. According to the Office for National Statistics, despite EU net migration being at its lowest in 10 years, net migration from outside the UK is the highest it’s been since 2004, bringing a fresh source of talent to UK employers.”

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