Human Resource Management

HRM Guide Updates

UK Unemployment

Labour Market Statistics

December 16 2015 - The unemployment rate stands at 5.2% - down 0.3% on the quarter and 0.8% down over the year. 31.30 million people were in work in August to October 2015 according to the labour force survey (LFS). The number of people employed was 207,000 higher this quarter and 505,000 higher than last year.

The working age employment rate is 73.9% - 0.4% up on the last quarter and up 0.7% over the year.

ILO-defined unemployment in August to October 2015 was 1.71 million (5.2%) - down by 110,000 on the previous quarter and down 244,000 on the same quarter last year.

The claimant count for key out-of-work benefits was 796,200 in November 2015 - up by 3,900 on the previous month and down 112,400 on the year.

Average wages, including bonuses, rose by 2.4% over the year.

According to Employment Minister Priti Patel:

"We are ending the year on a high, with a record rate of employment, and wages continuing to grow.

"Today's figures show half-a-million more people in work compared to this time last year, which means hundreds of thousands of families are going into the festive season with the security and hope for the future that work brings.

"Next year we will build on this positive story with the introduction of the National Living Wage and the new offer of 30 hours free childcare for working families. In this way we are delivering the high-wage, low-welfare society with opportunity and security at its heart that we know the British people want."

Mark Beatson, Chief Economist of the CIPD commented:

"Today's statistics suggest that job growth in the UK has well and truly recovered, following what seemed to be a pause earlier in the year. Employment has increased by half a million and it's encouraging to see the unemployment rate continuing to fall. It now stands at 5.2%, which is below the level that many commentators had regarded as sustainable. But wage growth remains subdued, and this makes it less likely that we will see interest rates increase during 2016.

"With very low inflation, the average pay packet is still increasing in real terms, but this will only be sustainable if productivity increases. This will require organisations to invest in technology, new systems and their workforce.

"Also, the latest figures for public sector employment show that it fell by just 12,000 in the three months to September. With the Spending Review likely to require far fewer job cuts than anticipated, public sector employers might find the coming months less challenging than feared, even if the 1% pay ceiling does affect their ability to recruit and retain key staff."

"The key to safeguarding your business against a talent shortfall, lies in understanding the current state of recruitment. Today, recruitment like marketing is a constant activity. If you want to hire people that will be productive, you must be able to attract candidates that believe in the values of your company and want to be a part of it. You can only do this if you have a strong employer brand. If all recruiters focused on building strong and genuine employer brands, it would lead to a more productive and improved UK labour force. Doing this requires a focused and modern approach to recruitment that makes the most of today's technology."

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