Starting salaries in the UK have leapt up to their highest level since the recession began despite the overall number of job vacancies declining in July, new figures have shown. In the strongest sign yet that the ‘war for talent’ has returned to the job market after the recession, employers are being forced to pay premium rates for good staff despite remaining nervous about the economic outlook.
The survey by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation REC and KPMG showed starting salaries for permanent staff jumped from 53.9 in June to 56.1 last month - the highest since April 2008. Anything above 50 represents an increase. Year-on-year, wages have grown by 26 per cent, the report showed.
However, the number of permanent jobs available fell from 60.7 in June to 60.2 last month. While the figures still represent growth it is the slowest rate of expansion seen in nine months, the survey found.
Penny de Valk, chief executive of the Institute of Leadership & Management, said: "Supply and demand effects aren?t just about quantity but also quality. The war for talent is not over. Good people are still hard to find and companies will pay a premium for them."
The REC/ KPMG report highlighted several skills that were in short supply, including accountants, HR professionals and business analysts, on top of sectors that were traditionally hard to recruit for, such as IT and engineering.
Human resources chiefs across sectors agreed that the ?war for talent? was back on following a period where staff had been willing to take pay cuts or work shorter hours just to stay in a job. Some employers in the engineering and technical sectors were crying out for specialist skills, even despite nearly 2.5 million people being out of work, experts said. (September 9th, 2010)