Unemployment in the UK has risen by 48,000 to 2.67 million in the three months to December, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Carmen Watson, Managing Director of Pertemps, said, “Confidence has taken a huge knock over recent months with events both within the UK and Europe having a negative impact on the marketplace. Urgent measures are therefore needed to achieve the stability required to restore that confidence that will encourage businesses to hire again.

“However, in the midst of these high numbers of unemployed people, there are sectors that are showing strong growth. We are still regularly hearing from companies that are struggling to take on talented staff that meet their requirements and there are certainly still opportunities in many areas as firms wrangle with skills shortages.

“Many vacancies that are currently becoming available are in temporary posts as company bosses ramp up operational bandwidth to meet surges in demand without being saddled with fixed costs. But as long as the demand is still there, businesses will still need certain staff levels in order to service their clients and customers.”