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Employment numbers to swell as bosses plan recruitment drive

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Almost half of UK employers are planning on taking on more staff in the third quarter of 2007.

In addition, fueled by a stable economy, a quarter say they plan to add a larger number of employees in the second half of the year compared to the first. Just one in ten won’t be adding to existing headcount.

These are the findings of Careerbuilder.co.uk, which also reveals a buoyant temporary market. More than a third of bosses say they hired temps in the first half of the year, a quarter plan to take on more in Q3 whilst 22 per cent say they will do the same in Q4. Almost half said they were very likely, or somewhat likely, to move temporary workers into permanent positions.

Employers are also paying more than lip-service to calls for greater diversity. Twenty-one per cent of bosses plan to take on more women this year and next, with 16 per cent promising to attract disabled workers, 13 per cent Asian employees and just 8 per cent gay/lesbian staff.

Despite the aggressive hiring policies employers admit that finding good staff continues to be a problem. A third of employers say that they just can’t find the right people.

One-in-ten employers say that given the shortage of top talent, they are more willing to pay to relocate a qualified candidate from another city or region. Thirty four per cent would pay as much as £5000 for the privilege.

It is no surprise therefore that employers continue to offer larger salaries to get the right people on board. Given the shortage of quality candidates, employers are focusing on keeping existing talent.

According to the report authors, whilst over half are satisfied with their jobs, 15 per cent plan to leave in the next six months. Just last week HR Zone reported on findings from the CIPD which reveal that 78 per cent of organisations experienced retention difficulties in 2006.

Female workers, more so than men, may be more open to switching careers. Forty-five per cent of women say they have already changed careers one or two times, compared to only 33 per cent of men.

Dave Smith, managing director of the website said: “UK employers will continue to struggle with a shrinking skilled labour force as Baby Boomers move closer to retirement and the smaller generations of replacement workers falls under quota. The UK workforce can also expect to see employers become more creative in their recruitment and retention efforts, evident in higher salaries, increased training and more flexible work cultures.”

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Annie Hayes

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