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

UK job postings on Indeed continue to rise. Job postings — a real-time measure of labour market activity — were 34.7% above the 1 February 2020, pre-pandemic baseline, seasonally adjusted, as of 22 October 2021. The hiring upswing shows no sign of running out of steam, with most categories recording further improvements in recent weeks. 

A line graph titled “Job postings on Indeed UK”
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 22 Oct 2021. There was a 34.7% change in UK job postings on Indeed from 01 Feb 2020 to 22 Oct 2021.

Aviation recovery 

Over the latest four-week period, the strongest improvement was in aviation. Job postings in that category are now just 10% off the pre-pandemic baseline, having seen a 38 percentage point improvement since 24 September. Simplification of rules around international travel last month led to a surge in holiday bookings, while the US will open its borders to vaccinated UK travellers from 8 November. Flight attendants, aeronautical engineers and pilots are the job titles currently in highest demand. 

Sports, loading & stocking, veterinary, human resources and real estate also saw notable gains in the latest four-week period. 

Table titled “Aviation recovery.”
Table titled “Aviation recovery.” Indeed compared the percent change in UK job postings, between 01 February, 2020, and 22 Oct 2021 across various sectors divided into sections “strongest performers,” and “weakest performers.” The strongest performers were aviation and sports, while the weakest performers were chemical engineering and social science. 

North East continues to lead 

The North East continues to lead the regional recovery, with job postings 69% above the pre-pandemic level. Northern Ireland is the weakest performer at 18%, having been overtaken by London (22%). 

Bar graph titled “Job postings on Indeed UK.”
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 22 Oct 2021. The North East saw a 69% change, the largest, while Northern Ireland saw the lowest % change at 18%.

Northern cities and large towns continue to have strongest recoveries

Looking at job posting recoveries by cities and large towns, Barnsley leads from Sunderland and Middlesbrough. 

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 that remain below pre-pandemic levels, though only marginally now. As a major airport location, Crawley will have been boosted by the rebound in aviation job postings. 

Table titled “Barnsley has strongest recovery.”
Table titled “Barnsley has strongest recovery.” This table shows the percentage change in job postings on Indeed UK since 01 Feb 2020, seasonally adjusted, to 22 October 2021. Barnsley saw a 87% change, the largest, while Aberdeen saw the lowest % change at -4%.

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.


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. 

The number of job postings on Indeed.com, whether related to paid or unpaid job solicitations, is not indicative of potential revenue or earnings of Indeed, which comprises a significant percentage of the HR Technology segment of its parent company, Recruit Holdings Co., Ltd. Job posting numbers are provided for information purposes only and should not be viewed as an indicator of performance of Indeed or Recruit. Please refer to the Recruit Holdings investor relations website and regulatory filings in Japan for more detailed information on revenue generation by Recruit’s HR Technology segment.

*We looked at the relationship between job postings, clicks and wages in sectors experiencing the greatest hiring difficulties in a previous post.