'Roll out Covid vaccine to save jobs’ say Canary Wharf analysts
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Businesses are calling for the Covid vaccine to be distributed as fast as possible to help the jobs market which is worse in London than the rest of the country, according to leading Canary Wharf analysts.
A survey by KPMG accountants points to a move towards “more stable conditions” in employment, but London’s recovery is slower than other regions, with a fall in permanent staff appointments.
London has some of Britain’s most deprived areas like Tower Hamlets which compared badly against December’s national trend showing the first uplift in staff appointments since September in the North, South and Midlands. This was caused by going into Tier 4 which has hit employment, KPMG’s report indicates.
“The roll out of a vaccine did bring more confidence to the jobs market,” KPMG senior partner Anna Purchas revealed. “Firms tentatively dipped their toes back into employment with demand for short-term staff.
“But we’ll have to see what January brings with a new lockdown sure to fuel economic uncertainty. There is light at the end of the tunnel for business and jobseekers, however, with the UK leading the way on the vaccine roll out.”
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But businesses want government action. The Recruitment and Employment Confederation calls for the cost of furlough and employers' National Insurance to be reduced “to help firms retain and hire staff” alongside the vaccine being delivered.
Neil Carberry, its chief executive, said: “London lags behind the regions recovering at different speeds. It has some of the most deprived boroughs in the country, underlining the urgency of action needed to help businesses retain workers as well as getting the vaccine delivered.”
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Yet the decline in permanent staff vacancies slowed down in December, while short-term temp vacancies rose. However, starting pay in permanent jobs fell for the ninth month running, the survey of 100 London recruitment and employment agencies reveals.
Lack of business activity led to lower wages at some companies, while other firms offered higher salaries in a desperate effort to attract stronger candidates. Redundancies and a lack of work pushed up the number of candidates looking for jobs, according to recruiters.