Although the demand for staff in the UK has weakened since the end of 2007, there is no sign of a dramatic deterioration in the jobs market, it has been suggested.

According to the latest Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)/ KPMG Labour Market Outlook survey, the hiring expectations of firms changed little between the winter and spring quarters.

The research suggested that 37 per cent of the employers questioned expected to increase staff levels during the first quarter of 2008, a slight increase on the 34 per cent recorded in the period between December 2007 and January this year.

"While the labour market is currently experiencing a period of relative slowdown – which should in due course show up in official statistics, possibly in those being released by the Office for National Statistics – the market is far from approaching a state of meltdown," stated CIPD chief economist Dr John Philpott.

In other recruitment news, research published this month by Natwest suggested that skilled workers in the UK are increasingly looking to move abroad, with many seeking better financial rewards.