Coronavirus and UK Job Postings Through May 1: Data from Indeed
Further signs of stabilisation in the job market with new postings on the rise.
This post is updated as of 1st May 2020. We will continue to update these trends regularly as we track how coronavirus impacts the global labour market.
Latest job postings data from Indeed suggest the hard-hit UK labour market is starting to stabilise. Though overall job postings were down -54% on last year’s trend as of 1st May, that pace of decline was little-changed from -53% a week ago. Moreover, the flow of new job postings has risen +46% from its mid-April low, suggesting that the downturn has bottomed out, at least for now.
The UK has seen among the largest hits to job postings among countries in our data. This appears to be partly linked to the fact that a greater share of UK employment is in sectors with lower work from home potential.
New job postings data provide further evidence of green shoots. Since its nadir on 19th April, the weekly number of new job postings has increased 46%, albeit remaining well down on last year’s trend. If this improvement is sustained, the overall picture will start to look slightly less bleak over the coming weeks.
Social services, care and education sectors lead upturn in new job postings
Looking at the change in the weekly number of new job postings trend since 19th April by occupation, the key drivers of the upturn have been community & social service (+62%), education & instruction (+55%), personal care & home health (+42%) and nursing (+26%).
Social care has come into particular focus in recent weeks. With the government looking to boost the workforce amid the coronavirus crisis, it has announced a new adult social care recruitment campaign in a bid to bring in 20,000 more staff to the sector.
The rise in demand for education professionals meanwhile indicates that hiring continues in the sector, despite no date having yet been announced for school reopenings and with uncertainties around the near term prospects of universities persisting.
East of England sees slowest decline in job postings
The East of England has taken over from London as the region with the slowest decline in job postings relative to last year’s trend, though it has still seen a -49% fall. Scotland and Northern Ireland remain the worst affected, with -63% and -61% declines respectively.
We will continue to provide regular updates on these trends as the situation evolves.
To measure the trends in total job postings, we calculated the 7-day moving average of the number of UK job postings on Indeed. We indexed each day’s 7-day moving average to the start of that year (1 February 2020 = 100 for 2020 data, and so on), or another date if specified on the chart.
For each country we report how the trend in total job postings this year differs from last year, in order to focus on the recent changes in labour market conditions due to COVID-19. For example: if job postings for a country increased 30% from 1 February 2019 to 1 May 2019, but only 20% from 1 February 2020 to 1 May 2020, then the index would have risen from 100 to 130 in 2019 and 100 to 120 in 2020. The year-to-date trend in job postings would therefore be down 7.7% on 1 May (120 is 7.7% below 130) in 2020 relative to 2019.
Information is based on publicly available information on the Indeed UK website (and other countries named in this post), limited to the UK (and those countries), is not a projection of future events, and includes both paid and unpaid job solicitations.
Jack is an Economist on the Indeed Hiring Lab who focuses on the UK/Ireland labour market. Before joining Indeed, Jack was a senior economist at Nationwide Building Society and prior to that at global information provider IHS Markit. He holds an MSc in finance and economic policy from SOAS, University of London and a BSc in economics and finance from the University of York.