Job candidates in strong position in Scotland, survey shows » SMEInsider

Job candidates in strong position in Scotland, survey shows

The end of the recession is going to make for an intense labour market in Scotland, according to a Robert Half UK survey, as HR directors across the country increase the recruitment of permanent staff.

A rapidly increasing demand for niche skills and commercial acumen will also put candidates themselves in a strong position, the recruitment firm said.

According to the latest Professional Hiring Index from Robert Half UK, 40 percent of HR directors in Scotland have plans to increase the recruitment of permanent staff in the first six months of 2015. The index reveals that only 13 per cent of HR directors believe their company will freeze hiring in the next six months, by not filling vacant positions nor creating new ones. Another 43 per cent of Scottish HR directors are maintaining their staffing levels by only filling vacated positions, compared to 45 per cent in mid-2014.

In London 58 per cent of companies plan to increase permanent headcount.

Both business and labour markets in Edinburgh, along with the rest of Scotland are displaying strong signs of growth, the Robert Half UK report noted, which is causing an upsurge in hiring and is expected to continue until the end of 2015.

The recruitment firm expects the increasing skills shortage facing Scotland to increase dramatically over the next year, creating a war for talent in the country‚Äôs labour force. Almost 95 per cent of HR executives said that the current environment makes it difficult to identify skilled professional-level employees for their organisation. Some with 43 per cent stated that this is very challenging — 11 points higher than the UK average of 32 per cent of HR directors who feel this way.

This underlines the struggle for talent businesses in Edinburgh and Scotland have against the rest of the UK, which can be especially difficult for smaller firms. HR execs are finding it especially difficult to find technical experts with niche skills to join their firm.

Some eighty five per cent are also worried about losing their top performers to other job opportunities in the next year.

Figures from the Office of National Statistics pain a positive picture for employment figures in Scotland and the whole of the UK. Unemployment in Scotland was at 5.4 per cent in February this year, with the UK at 5.7 per cent.