Job Growth in the Private Sector?
By Adrian Hobbs

To magnify the obvious, the hammer-blow of public sector cuts delivered by Chancellor Osborne late last month spells really bad news for public sector jobs. Some HR ‘gurus' are predicting public sector job losses in the hundreds of thousands by as early as 2012. It is this ‘doom and gloom' backdrop which makes our survey results compelling news.

Early results from our i-pad survey show encouraging signs that the private sector is a degree more optimistic about job creation than the public sector. This optimism, if realised in job growth terms, will help offset a fraction of the forecast losses in the public sector announced in the budget. Our findings, albeit on a regional scale (Midlands), are confirmed by the ‘Report on Jobs' paper published on the 7th of July 2010 by the REC and KPMG which showed that both permanent and temporary staff appointments continue to increase.

An impressive 80% of respondents in our survey said they would be recruiting soon. Of that number, 35% said they were expecting to recruit between 1-4 new staff, 33% between 5-9 staff and the remaining 32% indicating they would be employing more than 10 new staff members.

When asked which method they would use to hire, a healthy 42% of employers said they would be using agencies directly, 32% would be using job boards and only 26% would be relying on trade press or newspapers. These statistics not only indicate the growing trend of online recruitment, but also show a steady decline of the once ‘invincible' press advertising.

"Given the recent addition to the doom and gloom news in the public sector, these survey results are very encouraging for the private sector" commented Jackie Jackson, Recruitment Services Director for Flexplus. We really didn't know what to expect from our survey respondents. I am pleased that the ‘agency direct' statistics further emphasise the role agencies have to play, particularly with an increasing number of applicants per vacancy making the recruitment process more onerous.


The increase in the ‘use of job boards' data is more than encouraging as it supports our own strategy of developing the Fixed Fee and DIY recruitment models for our clients to use directly. These models are designed to keep costs down and optimise efficiency through the job Multipost facility and in-built Applicant Tracking System.

Added: 14th July 2010