As the labour market tightens, businesses need to adopt a ‘thoughtful approach’ to hiring, according to a new study from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

More than 83% of employers plan to hire more permanent staff in the very near future, although they also recognize the importance of temporary roles, the REC JobsOutlook survey has revealed.

According to this research, employers are showcasing a high level of confidence with 80% of company owners stating economic conditions are on the up. Some 94% of businesses now have the capacity to take on more work, which means there is a need for more staff – especially for companies wishing to cash in on sustained UK economic growth.

The regular monthly survey of 600 employers also revealed that 82% of existing businesses currently employ temporary workers to “access key strategic skills”. Some 97% of employers state that temporary workers earn more or equal salaries to those in permanent roles.

The key areas that need filling (temporary and permanent) include technical and engineering roles, as well as others in driving and distribution. For solely permanent roles, the construction industry is showcasing a need for full time staff, whilst professional and managerial positions require a number of temporary staff.

“Businesses want to hire so that they can take on more work,” REC’s director of policy Tom Hadley states. “But with fewer candidates available, employers need to take a thoughtful approach to bring in the skills they need.”

He added that hirers should look at the range of people available and consider how they engage with groups that might be underrepresented by structuring work differently to meet a candidate’s needs and lifestyle.

Hadley highlights a report from Timewise that stated 46% of the working population want flexibility and said that firms who offer the “opportunity to fix work around other commitments” could give “themselves and edge over the competition”.

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