Economic Worries Lead to Caution Around Hiring

As the start of the year has passed us by, there is no doubt that the future of the UK hangs in the balance as a result of Brexit. As a result, marketers are using caution when it comes to hiring.

As it currently stands, around 4.9% of marketers envisage their employment levels to increase in three months time when compared to the current levels. While 22.9% of markets expected levels to be higher, around 59% believed it would remain the same while 18% think it will drop below the levels we see today.

Currently, this figure is higher than the record low we saw during Q3 in 2019 but nonetheless, it is still a fairly reserved figure. During 2019, the net balance of marketers who thought that they expecting to hire stayed in the single figures for the entire year with it reaching its peak during the second quarter with a figure of 5.1%.

The economic uncertainties are causing marketers to hold back when it comes to hiring. The UK leaving the EU is also a large concern as there is a belief that it will lead to a reduction in skilled staff.

Despite this, the Conservatives win at the election has helped to remove some uncertainty according to some marketers.

At the end of 2019, there was a small degree of optimism around job prospects but it was still very low-key when compared to the series trend. The caution could be seen by 59% of businesses believing that employment levels will remain as they are.

However, the doom and gloom are not likely to disappear any time soon as economic experts believe that this weakness will persist throughout 2020. As a result, this will hold back levels of recruitment. Despite this, some businesses took recent political developments as a positive as the imposition of a government as well as a working majority helped to remove some uncertainty while helping to speed up investment along with decision making.

Marketers seem pessimistic about the industry that they work in and this is feeding into their cautious approach. However, all of this has been met with improvements in their feelings of how their company will perform. Therefore, 1% of businesses expect their business to grow while panellists are showing optimism for the first time since 2018.