Tag: Cost of living

34% of all employees are currently looking to move jobs

A workplace survey by CareerWallet has revealed that 14% of employees across the UK have had to find a second job to supplement their incomes and cover the huge increase in costs on bills, food, petrol and many other essential outgoings.

The survey showed that over a third (34%) of all employees are currently looking to move jobs which amounts to over 10 million employees in the UK. This huge shift is said to be driven by individuals looking for higher salaries with 37% admitting they want to leave because they they’re not paid enough.

In a nutshell, these figures that more than a third of the workforce are looking to change jobs, and in a skills thin market this is concerning for employers and TA teams.

Craig Bines, CEO of The CareerWallet Group, commented: “It is hugely concerning to see that 14% of the nation’s workforce is having to find a second income just to cover living costs and this will certainly have an impact on recruitment this year.

Recruiting is tough at the moment and the results of our survey suggest it is only going to get harder. Finding the right employees can be hard, so businesses need to look after their staff now more than ever.

As we can see many candidates will be looking to move jobs, especially as it is the start of a new year and in this buoyant job market, plenty of roles are available. At CareerWallet we have millions of vacancies available across the UK, so it is an ideal time to register and find your next position.”

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417,000 working days lost because of labour disputes in October

The Office of National Statistics has released its latest Labour Market stats and the UK has recorded its second largest fall in real wage growth since records began in 2001. The latest official jobs figures also highlight the impact that strikes are having on the economy.

The cost-of-living crisis continues to take centre stage as real wages fall

Growth in average total pay (including bonuses) and regular pay (excluding bonuses) among employees was the same at 6.1% in August to October 2022; for regular pay, this is the strongest growth rate seen outside of the coronavirus pandemic period.

Average regular pay growth for the private sector was 6.9% in August to October 2022, and 2.7% for the public sector; outside of the height of the pandemic period, this is the largest growth rate seen for the private sector and is among the largest differences between the private sector and public sector growth rates that has been seen.

In real terms (adjusted for inflation) over the year, total and regular pay both fell by 2.7%; this is slightly smaller than the record fall in real regular pay seen in April to June 2022 (3%) but still remains among the largest falls in growth since comparable records began in 2001.

The UK employment rate for August to October 2022 has increased by 0.2% on the quarter to 75.6% but is still below COVID-19 levels. Although the number of employees increased over the last three months, the number of self-employed workers decreased.

Payrolled employees for November 2022 showed another monthly increase, up 107,000 on the revised October 2022 figures, to a record 29.9 million.

Unemployment magically increases

The unemployment rate for August to October 2022 increased by 0.1% on the quarter to 3.7%. In the latest three-month period, the number of people unemployed for up to six months increased, and this increase was seen across all age groups.

Talk of recession continues even though the economic inactivity rate decreased by 0.2% to 21.5% in August to October 2022. The ONS stated that the decrease in economic inactivity during the latest three months was driven by those aged 50 to 64 years. Looking at economic inactivity by reason, the quarterly decrease was driven by those inactive because they are retired.

In September to November 2022, the estimated number of vacancies fell by 65,000 on the quarter to 1,187,000 but despite five consecutive quarterly falls, the number of vacancies remain at historically high levels. It’s believed the fall in the number of vacancies reflect uncertainty across industries, as respondents continue to cite economic pressures as a factor in holding back on recruitment.

There were 417,000 working days lost because of labour disputes in October 2022, which is the highest since November 2011.

Neil Carberry, Chief Executive at the REC said: “Today’s data shows businesses and candidates are reacting to the economic situation, but the overall picture remains one of strong demand from employers. With employment and unemployment both rising slightly, and economic inactivity dropping a little, it may be that the long period of growing inactivity through the pandemic is ending. That would be good news for incomes for people returning to the labour market and for economic growth.”

Joanne Frew, Global Head of Employment & Pensions at DWF, also commented: “With industrial unrest at a peak, employers are grappling with the ongoing challenge of balancing calls for increased pay against rising business costs. As always it will be essential for employers to focus on fostering a positive workplace culture and for leaders to communicate clearly and transparently with the workforce to help create a sense of calm.”

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National living wage increased

The wait for the much-anticipated Autumn budget is over. Millions are to pay more tax as the Chancellor cuts top-rate threshold in order to plug “black holes”. While saying he “tried to be fair”, disposable incomes are set to fall by 7.1% in real-term numbers – which equates to the lowest levels since records began in the mid-fifties.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt declared he is increasing the national living wage by 9.7% next year, from £9.50 an hour for over-23s to £10.42. This represents an annual pay rise worth over £1,600 pounds to a full-time worker.

But what do the announcements mean for employers? Will businesses face backlash if they’re unable to pay the living wage? The u-turns and amendments could dramatically affect the contractor workforce.

Alexandra Farmer, Head of Team and Solicitor at  WorkNest commented: “With the rise in the National Living Wage mentioned in the budget, I expect a number of businesses will assess their workforce. Do they need all the employees they have? Can they make efficiencies to allow them to reduce the overall headcount? If so, we could be looking at an increase in redundancies over the next few months. It’s likely businesses will want these completed ahead of the rise in April to limit costs (i.e. redundancy payments and notice payments would otherwise be calculated using the higher rate of pay once it comes into effect).”

Unfortunately, it isn’t all good news for everyone.

Matt Fryer, MD of Brookson Group, a People2.0 Company commented: “This Autumn Statement and last month’s reversal of the measures announced in the Growth Plan mean that everyone is paying more tax, but this is especially true of contractors and the self-employed. Due to the structure of their businesses, independent contractors are particularly hit by today’s cut to dividend allowances and the previously announced increase in corporation tax rates.

“This is short-sighted. The economy needs flexible talent to support growth, including the infrastructure and energy independence projects that the Chancellor has prioritised. Contractors are available to work as and when their skills are required and the personal risks associated with this flexibility should be reflected in the tax system.

“Some may decide to seek permanent employment as a result of this budget, but contracting is not just about the money; it is a flexible lifestyle choice. If the Government is not going to incentivise the flexible workforce, businesses need to consider what else they can do to continue to make contracting an attractive option. This might include access to improved services or benefits, in compliance with the off-payroll working rules.”

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25% of employees have received employer assistance, outside of annual salary increases


New research
from Randstad has revealed that workers want more support from employers to help them manage the growing cost of living crisis.

The research, which surveyed 7,000 people across five markets* showed that the strongest pressure is coming from the younger generations with the majority (57%) of Gen Z and Millennials placing responsibility for ensuring that they can afford increasing costs with government or employers, compared to only 44% of Baby Boomers.

Sentiment differs across continents, as three in five (60%) Germans and around half of British (53%) and Dutch (46%) workers placed primary responsibility on government, while only a fifth (21%) of Americans agreed. US workers were more likely to pinpoint their employers as the ones who should take action, with a fifth (21%) choosing them, compared to less than one in ten (9%) of Brits and Australians and only 5% of Germans.

Growing expectations of businesses

Only a quarter (25%) of employees have so far received employer assistance, outside of annual salary increases, but most workers say they want to see more action from their employers in the next six months. Close to half (45%) want a monthly cost of living pay boost, with other demands on employers including:

  • Over half (52%) wanting their employer to increase their salaries outside of the regular cadence of pay reviews
  • Nearly a third (30%) wanting subsidies for daily expenses like cost of energy or travel
  • Over a quarter (27%) wanting a one-off cost of living payment

Younger workers have the highest expectations

The level of employee expectation also differs by generation, with younger workers wanting the most help. Half (49%) of baby boomers said they themselves were responsible for managing the increasing cost of living, compared to just a third (33%) of under-35s.

These generational differences are also reflected in the fact that two thirds (67%) of Gen Z workers have received or expect to receive additional assistance from their employer to help them through the cost of living crisis, compared to only a quarter (24%) of baby boomers who said the same.

Employers are beginning to make this a priority

There are some signs of employers beginning to help workers manage the current economic climate. One in ten workers (9%) have received a one-off cost of living payment and 8% are receiving monthly cost of living pay boosts. This is more common in Germany, where 14% of workers have received this assistance, compared to only 7% of Americans.

Sander van ‘t Noordende, CEO of Randstad, said: “As talent shortages continue across many industries around the globe, employees are now facing a fresh challenge of the increasing cost of living. Against this backdrop, workers are looking to employers to offer the complete package – flexible, inclusive and financially stable employment. While the economic environment may encourage people to stick with their employer, causing a slowdown in the “Great Rotation” businesses mustn’t miss out on the unique opportunity to create a more content and productive workforce. Those who feel supported now, are likely to remain loyal even when times aren’t as tough.”

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50% of organisations considering practical training for financial planning in cost-of-living crisis

Research* from DeltaNet International has shown that learning and development professionals believe mental health and wellbeing is the most important eLearning topic for the next 12 months.

In a close second came stress management training for employees, with nearly nine in 10 (88%) employers saying they are worried about how the cost-of-living crisis is affecting employees.  

These areas are ranked as more important than diversity and inclusion, cybersecurity, health and safety, and sustainability training.  

Half of those surveyed (50%) revealed that their learning and development budgets would not change despite the current economic climate putting increased pressure on businesses to support employees further with one in five (21%) stating that a reduction in their budget would be one of the biggest challenges affecting learning and development in the workplace. 

Regarding specific training to help employees navigate the cost of living, almost two-thirds (65%) said this isn’t something they have yet given. But half (50%) are considering implementing practical training such as financial planning.  

The results also revealed an underinvestment in training line managers. Just 27% of L&D professionals said they plan to provide line managers with training linked to the rising cost of living, such as helping managers to spot the signs of those in their teams who may be struggling. 

Chris Chappell, Head of Content at DeltaNet International, said: “Given the current economic situation we find ourselves in, it’s unsurprising that mental health support and stress management are topping the agenda for learning and development priorities.  

“Businesses must support colleagues as best as possible to maintain a contented and productive workforce, but many still have not acted. Whilst good rates of pay and benefits schemes are key to helping people through the cost-of-living crisis, there is much more we can do to support employees, and training plays a key role in this.” 

Employee engagement with L&D also remains a big challenge. 27% of those surveyed revealed this is currently their primary obstacle. Most HR and training professionals are trying to overcome this by asking employees for written feedback on training, with 77% conducting post-training evaluation – only 12% request verbal feedback. 

 

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Rise in interest rates a major concern to 49.6% of the workforce

According to a survey by independent job board CV- Library, 49.6% of the country’s professionals are so concerned about rising interest rates by the Bank of England that they will look for a new role with a higher salary. The report showed that only 13.8% of respondents said that rising interest rates have no bearing on their decision to look for a new job and that they aren’t looking to make any changes. 28% report that they are already looking for a new job anyway and 8.6% say the news makes them want to sit tight and stay where they are.

An overwhelming three quarters (75.2%) of the 2,300 UK professionals questioned feel that the reversal of the 1.25% National Insurance increase in November is not a big enough step to make a difference to their income versus the cost-of-living increases they’re facing.

In other data found in the report, 59% feel that a weak pound will have an adverse effect upon the business they work for and a further 68% worry about their job security as a result.

Lee Biggins, Founder and CEO of CV-Library said: “UK professionals are taking a clear stand and while they cannot control the Government’s decision or the economic crisis, they’re clearly feeling fearful and are prepared to take their own actions to protect their finances. An increased number of candidates in the current job market is undoubtedly a good thing for recruiters who’ve struggled to hire since the pandemic, and for the economy, but it’s not a solution to the overall crisis. Time is of the essence and the Government needs to take immediate action to address spiralling inflation and calm both the alarming spike in interest rates and the British public.”

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Market at “boiling point” by a post Brexit talent shortage

London-based network engineering recruitment firm Hamilton Barnes has reported that “a counter offer culture” is gripping the tech recruitment sector as candidates “go to market to get a payrise” triggered by the cost of living crisis and a post-Brexit talent shortage.

George Barnes, Co-founder and Director of the firm said this was prompting “desperate attempts to hold onto talent” and “wild counter offers of up to £40,000 extra”.

He explained: “Inflation and the cost-of-living crisis has had no real effect on our clients in terms of hiring. While some sectors may have experienced recruitment slowdowns, we are seeing clients in the tech sector hiring ever more aggressively.

“Meanwhile, the effect our current economic situation is having on candidates is that they are reading about it and hearing about it in the press and they are going to market in huge numbers to get a pay rise, especially if they believe they are not in a position to get one in their current role, maybe because they think they haven’t been there long enough to get one or are in a structured role where they know they are not due one yet.

“In turn, employers who are determined to hold onto talent in a market where talent is highly prized and in short supply, are counter offering really aggressively into the tens of thousands.

“In the last week, I have seen one employer go up by 40k on someone’s salary to hold on to them when they were offered a role elsewhere because they were clearly so desperate to hold onto them. This sort of offer is phenomenal and can only be counter-productive.”

Barnes, who co-founded Hamilton Barnes, with Nick Barker in 2014, said the market had already been brought to “boiling point” by a post Brexit talent shortage:

“Salaries in tech have risen massively since Brexit – most have doubled at least with a typical salary we might have seen pre-Brexit of around £54k is now around £100k,” he said.

“Salaries were previously diluted by the influx of European workers into UK tech – for example when the Greek economy collapsed and lots of Greek specialists relocated here, happy to work for 25% less. It was a similar story with talent from Portugal and Spain.

“So, the market pre-Brexit was far more competitive talent-wise with more candidates competing for the best jobs so salaries were kept down and employers never counter offered. We have seen a complete reversal of that. We are firmly in the grip of a counter offer culture and we need to calm this down.”

Barnes said he believed agencies like Hamilton Barnes, which saw record growth during the Pandemic, had a responsibility to clients and candidates to “take unnecessary heat out of the market”, and said he was “steering some candidates back to their current employers”, explaining:

“Of course, we want candidates who are genuine candidates looking for their next role but we are not interested in people who are moving solely because of a kneejerk reaction to press reports of a cost of living crisis.

“My advice to candidates who are only moving because the current market conditions have triggered them into wanting a payrise is that they should not need to look externally but if they think they are stuck because they don’t meet the criteria to hit the next threshold where they are and are worried about pay, speak to their current employer. Employers in tech want to hold on to their talent and are open to conversations.”

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Millions are looking for higher-paid roles or pay rises

According to a recently published national employee survey showing trends and insights into the UK job market, 52% of UK employees say that the cost-of-living crisis is impacting their career by pushing them to look for a new role or a pay rise from their current employer.

The survey by CareerWallet, went on to reveal that 27% of UK employees are already looking for a new role to earn more money to survive the cost-of-living crisis. A further 25% have either asked or are planning to ask for a pay rise from their current employer.

The cost-of-living crisis has driven up the costs of food, petrol, and energy bills. Of the employees surveyed, those under 30 have been most impacted. Thirty-five percent of these are in the process of looking for a new role. Regionally, the North East is most affected, with 40% of all employees changing roles.

The survey revealed how many employees are impacted by the increased cost of living. It highlights that current salaries and pay rises need to cover these costs to retain their staff and prevent them from looking for opportunities elsewhere.

Craig Bines, CEO at The CareerWallet Group, commented:  “At CareerWallet, we process millions of jobs a day and this allows us to quickly see how the job market is being impacted on a daily basis.

Our national employee survey has highlighted how UK employees are already being impacted by the rise in the cost of living and are actively looking to counter this by pursuing a new role or a pay increase and it is important that all employers are aware of this and act quickly to keep their talented people in their businesses.”

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Cost of living crisis is taking hold

Research from jobs and careers site, Reed.co.uk has shown that 33% of workers have applied for or have considered applying for a new job. In addition, 65% of workers have changed job-seeking priorities in response to the cost-of-living crisis. A salary increase is becoming a common priority for 34% of workers.

The survey, which looked at the opinions of over 2,000, revealed that 22% have said they intend to look for a new job soon and 55% of workers are actively seeking or considering a new one. A further 17% admitted that the increasing cost of living made better work-from-home opportunities more of a priority.

Amongst active jobseekers, the data revealed that 30% of women are more motivated by a salary increase than men (27%). Furthermore, younger workers – between 18-34 – are more likely to consider changing jobs to secure a salary increase than other generations (45% compared to the 29% average).

Fifty percent of workers said that a salary increase is the most meaningful action an employer can take to retain employees, while 47% said that a low salary was the reason they’d want to leave their current employer. Forty percent of workers indicated that they would stay with their current employer if a better salary counter offer were made.

In terms of amounts, the survey showed that employers could retain some workers with moderate increases. For workers aged 55-64 and 65+, most (32% and 38% respectively) agreed that salary increases of less than £1,000 would be sufficient to convince them to stay. For workers aged 18-34 and 35-44, a salary increase of between £2,500 – £4,900 was required by most (33% and 30% respectively) to continue with their current employer.

James Reed, Chairman of Reed.co.uk, commented: “Due to runaway inflation currently at 9.4% and outstripping wage increases across many industries, millions will be on the move from this September onwards to secure a pay bump.

“Although the current economic landscape is challenging, amidst warnings of a looming recession from the Bank of England, UK workers should feel empowered to capitalise on the current labour market which continues to show high volumes of jobs being created.

“However, with inflation potentially rising to 13%, it could increasingly feel like workers are chasing after a galloping horse, with some workers having to take on a second or third job to keep up with the soaring cost-of-living increases. This could lead to a two-speed workforce with workers in some sectors falling behind others.

“It’s a tough situation where very few are benefiting, including employers who are facing a higher turnover of candidates than you’d typically expect in August with over 50% of workers considering a move.

“For employers, a failure to proactively ensure salary packages reflect current inflationary increases will have a significant impact on their business’s ability to attract and retain staff. Understandably, many may not feel in a financial position to deliver significant increases in pay. However, offering desired pay rises costs less than replacing workers and our research shows that the vast majority of candidates (87%) are poised to accept a counter offer from their current employer provided it meets expectations.

“During these challenging times, it’s clear that many workers – particularly those feeling the pinch from the cost-of-living crisis – deserve a pay rise. For most, the best way could be to secure a new job.”

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Government and healthcare workers amongst the most concerned

With the cost of living constantly increasing and real UK wages falling at the fastest pace on record, making ends meet is a priority for many workers.

Research from Glassdoor reveals that 22% of UK workers are concerned about finding a job that supports the cost of living at the moment and that anxiety around this issue is on the increase.

An analysis of words used on Fishbowl by Glassdoor showed that mentions of “cost of living”,

“inflation”, “rent”, “petrol”, “accommodation”, and “bills” have increased by 67% year-on-year.

Over 700,000 Glassdoor reviews by UK-based employees were examined. The data revealed that negative mentions of “salary”, “pay”, and “compensation” increased by 16% since 2020.

The biggest increase in salary complaints was among government workers – up 26% from 2021. In the past, these workers were less inclined to discuss salary negatively. But, with public sector wage growth falling far behind the private sector, this is no longer the case, indicating a possible future exodus of government workers. Similarly, complaints about salary have also increased among healthcare workers.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, employees in the hospitality industry(restaurants, food service, travel, and accommodation) have seen unusually high pay growth, and salary complaints have dropped.

Lauren Thomas, Glassdoor’s EMEA Economist, said: “The only constant in 2022 is change -and skyrocketing prices. Even with high wage growth and a tight labour market, workers are feeling the pinch as inflation emerges as the biggest winner. With real wages falling a record 3.0 percent thanks to inflation, the cost of living is a priority for many job seekers.

“Job vacancies, which have hit record highs month after month, have started to fall but even now employers can’t rest easy. Hiring will remain difficult, particularly in industries like hospitality and healthcare where employees’ Glassdoor reviews show they feel overworked and underpaid.”

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