The UK job market witnessed growth in some areas during the months of April, May and June 2014, when compared to the previous quarter, the newest CV-Library Job Market Report has found. The report identifies growth across the key performance metrics of advertised jobs and job searches, however job application numbers are in decline.

Key Findings

  • Advertised jobs have increased by 6% since Q1 2014 and 31% since the same period in 2013.
  • Job applications have decreased by nearly 11% since Q1 2014 but do represent a 40% increase on last year’s totals.
  • Out of the 32 job sectors investigated within the study, job applications increased in majority of industries since last quarter (Q1 2014).
  • The job applications per job advertisement ratio has dipped to an average of 17 applications per job, which is in comparison to 21 applications per job in the previous quarter, and 18 applications per job in Q2 2013.
  • Sectors which saw the greatest increase in terms of job applications were: media (+28%), catering (+24%), property services (+22%), customer services (+20%) and accounting (+20%).

Job postings up across majority of industries

The most encouraging findings relate to the number of advertised jobs – of which there were +45% more between Q2 2014 and the same quarter last year, and +6% more than Q1 of this year.

Out of 32 job industries, all but seven sectors experienced growth this quarter, with accounting / finance / insurance, charities, leisure and tourism, media, management, medical / pharmaceutical / scientific and military / emergency / government all demonstrating a decrease in job postings since last quarter.

The top five industries, according to growth between Q1 and Q2 of this year were: distribution (+35%), catering (+19%) manufacturing/surveying and telecoms (both +11%), and construction (+10%).

The top five industries in terms of growth between Q2 2014 and Q2 2013 were: hospitality (+142%), distribution (+133%), construction (+111%), agriculture (+85%) and public sector (+83%).

The industries with the highest numbers of advertised jobs in Q2 2014 were: engineering, construction, education, sales and automotive.

To compare, the industries with the highest numbers of job applications in Q2 2014 were: administration, engineering, construction, sales, retail, accounting/financial/insurance and customer services.

Job applications per advert reveals competition within sectors

In Q2 of this year, the sector with the highest ratio between applications and jobs was administration, with 65 job applicants to each vacancy.

Other highly competitive sectors were customer service (41 applications to every job advertisement), retail/purchasing (37 applications to every job advertisement) and distribution (33 applications to every job advertisement).

The sector with the lowest ratio between applications and jobs was medical / pharmaceutical / scientific with only 6 job applicants to each vacancy.

Employment search exhibits growth

Alongside a rise in advertised jobs, following on from this year’s first quarter, Q2 delivered yet more job searches from candidates actively researching prospective vacancies.

When compared to the previous quarter, Q2 celebrated a rise of +28% more job searches, however, comparing the quarter’s performance with the same period of last year, growth stands at an impressive +42.8%.

This positive performance in job seeking activity is further heightened by an increase in the number of people actively registering their CVs for head hunting, compared with this time last year, with an increase of +24%.

When looking at registration by preferred industry of work, administration, construction and engineering were the most popular, with the most new and updated CVs uploaded in Q2. Administration saw over 112,500 CVs registered or updated; construction, 86,200; and engineering 86,000.

Again, more ‘on the go’ job seeking

Another promising conclusion relates to the use of mobile, as, yet again, there was an increase in ‘on the go’ job seeking behaviour. By the end of Q2, the percentage of job seekers using mobile devices to search for and apply to jobs stood at 35% – up from 32% during the previous quarter.

Job postings up across majority of industries

The key findings demonstrate a strengthening market, with employment opportunities increasing by substantial margins during Q2, when compared on both a quarterly (vs. Q1 2014) and a yearly (vs. Q2 2013) basis. This clear desire for companies to hire exemplifies a strengthening economy as more businesses look to employ new staff.

With Q1 of this year being exceptionally strong in terms of job advertisements and applications, we have seen a slight backwards trend in job applications, but the good news is that figures have improved across all metrics when compared to performances in 2013. CV-Library is witnessing a continued increase in job hunting and recruitment activity as the nation bounces back from recession.

Lastly, whilst job applications may have decreased over the last quarter, the number of job searches have increased.

This could indicate a change in approach from prospective candidates – whilst interest in new employment opportunities grows, candidates are becoming more selective about which jobs they choose to apply for.