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UK Job Postings Through 10 September: Stabilisation

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Job postings pause for breath after sustained surge.

We regularly update this report to track the pandemic’s effects on the labour market. 

Job postings on Indeed UK levelled off in the latest fortnight. That followed a sustained run of strong growth over the past few months but still leaves postings well above their pre-pandemic level. Job postings — a real-time measure of labour market activity — were 26.1% above the 1 February 2020, pre-pandemic baseline, seasonally adjusted, as of 10 September 2021. 

Survey data indicate the UK economy has lost some momentum recently, with businesses in part linking this to staff shortages curtailing activity. We looked at how demand for labour has outpaced supply in a number of sectors in a recent post, leading to rising wage pressures in those categories. 

A line graph titled “Job postings on Indeed UK” showing the percentage change in job postings on Indeed UK since 01 Feb 2020, seasonally adjusted, to 10 Sep 2021. There was a 26.1% change in UK job postings on Indeed from 01 Feb 2020 to 10 Sep 2021.

Veterinary, education & instruction and dental on the rise 

The veterinary category saw the biggest improvement in trend during the past fortnight. This was followed by education & instruction and dental. Chemical engineering, real estate and therapy saw the sharpest deteriorations. 

Table titled “Veterinary growth.” Indeed compared the percent change in UK job postings, between 01 February, 2020, and 10 Sep 2021 across various sectors divided into sections “strongest performers,” and “weakest performers.” The strongest performers were veterinary, education & instruction and dental, while the weakest performers were chemical engineering, real estate and therapy.  

London continues to see slowest regional recovery

The regional picture remained little changed in the past fortnight. London remains the laggard, with job postings 10% above pre-pandemic levels. It will be interesting to see how the return of office workers affects London ⁠— and other large commuter cities ⁠— where their prolonged absence has weighed on local services jobs for a prolonged period. The North East continues to lead the regional recovery, with job postings 55% above the pre-pandemic level. 

Bar graph titled “Job postings on Indeed UK.” This bar graph shows the percentage change in job postings on Indeed UK since 01 Feb 2020, seasonally adjusted, to 10 Sep 2021. The North East saw a 55% change, the largest, while London saw the lowest % change at 10%.

Middlesbrough and Sunderland have strongest recoveries

Looking at job posting recoveries by cities and large towns, postings are furthest above pre-pandemic levels in Middlesbrough, followed by Sunderland, Stoke, Barnsley and Hull. 

As we discussed in a previous post, posting recovery has been fastest in cities with higher shares of manufacturing, distribution, healthcare and education jobs, while areas reliant on hospitality, tourism and highly paid, white-collar, work-from-home jobs trail. 

Aberdeen and Crawley are the only two cities and large towns we track where job postings have not yet recovered to pre-pandemic levels. 

Table titled “Middlesbrough leads job postings recovery.” This table shows the percentage change in job postings on Indeed UK since 01 Feb 2020, seasonally adjusted, to 10 September 2021. Middlesbrough saw a 71% change, the largest, while Aberdeen saw the lowest % change at -21%.

We host the underlying job-postings chart data on Github as downloadable CSV files. Typically, it will be updated with the latest data one day after this blog post was published.

Methodology

All figures in this blog post are the percentage change in seasonally-adjusted job postings since 1 February, 2020, using a seven-day trailing average. 1 February, 2020, is our pre-pandemic baseline. We seasonally adjust each series based on historical patterns in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Each series, including the national trend, occupational sectors, and sub-national geographies, is seasonally adjusted separately. We adopted this new methodology in January 2021. 

Information is based on publicly available information on the Indeed UK website (and any other countries named in the post), is limited to the UK (and those countries), is not a projection of future events, and includes both paid and unpaid job solicitations.