Ugne Vasatkeviciute |

Latest statistics on vacancies and jobs in the UK: April 2024

How do the latest statistics from the Office of National Statistics impact candidate sourcing activities?

The Office for National Statistics has released its April bulletin regarding the estimated vacancies and jobs in the UK between January to March 2024. The report reveals recent changes in employment levels, allowing businesses of any size to better understand the levels of skilled talent available within the current market.

Does this mean more candidates for each vacancy?

The time period from January 2021 to March 2021 saw a large decrease in vacancies in the UK, having 628,000 vacancies at the time, compared to the same time period in 2024, which was 916,000 (see ONS graph, right). Such changes display a large increase in vacancies within the UK market over the period. This data from the Office of National Statistics highlights a growing number of those unemployed, which raises the question – does the UK have a scarcity of skilled workers, or is it a case of recruiters being unable to effectively attract talent and fill their vacant positions?

Which industries have seen the highest vacancy rates?

According to the data collated by the Office for National Statistics, below are the top 5 industries with the highest vacancy rates (as of April 2024):

  1. Human health & social work activities – 159,000 vacancies
  2. Wholesale & retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles – 117,000 vacancies
  3. Accommodation & food service activities – 108,000 vacancies
  4. Professional scientific & technical activities – 90,000 vacancies
  5. Administrative & support service activities, as well as retail – both industries currently have 66,000.

Where should recruiters look for top talent?

Considering the available vacancies, what is the best way to attract skilled workers to fill your vacancies when the market continues to be competitive? Aside from ensuring a great candidate experience, it’s also important to understand what sourcing channels are worth recruiters investing in to find suitable talent. Eploy’s Candidate Attraction Report 2024 unveiled the best sourcing channels for recruiters to find the best quantity and quality of candidates, by industry and company size. Below we have highlighted 3 sourcing channels, however for more information, which may be more relevant to your industry and role requirements, make sure you download the free Candidate Attraction Report here.

Employee Referrals

Although employee referrals offer a generally smaller pool of candidates for recruiters to choose from, the talent attracted this way is usually of higher quality and more suitable for the business and role. This channel is great for sourcing Skilled/Technical/Professional roles but isn’t as effective when it comes to finding the right candidates for Senior and Executive level positions. See page 66 of the report for more information on Employee Referrals.

Professional social networks

Professional social networks, such as LinkedIn provide recruitment teams with a highly effective digital sourcing channel, where recruiters are able to source skilled/technical/professional candidates, as well as connect with candidates for more Senior/Executive roles. The effectiveness of this sourcing channel is also proved by the growth in usage, with an 88% jump in recruiters regularly using this channel to source candidates compared to the previous year. For similar insights, to help you optimise your recruitment activities, make sure you are following Eploy on LinkedIn, and get up-to-date information delivered right to your feed. See page 69 of the report for more information.

Talent Pooling

Although the use of talent pooling offers a smaller quantity of candidates, they tend to be of higher quality and better suited for the advertised role. The usability of this candidate sourcing type has increased to 50% within in-house recruitment teams, with the best results being seen when recruiting for Entry Level Roles (60%).  

Talent pooling is highly beneficial due to it offering a way to recruit proactively. And by utilising an applicant tracking system like Eploy, you can easily create talent pools and pipelines, with a fast way to search and filter candidates, along with having a way to consistently engage with them, all in one platform. Eploy applicant tracking system allows you to create lists of pre-screened and engaged candidates, ready for you to approach, which removes the need for lengthy manual administration processes. To see how Eploy ATS could make talent pooling an easier and more organised process, book a demo with our team, and see all the ways Eploy can help streamline your recruitment operations.

Why recruitment data is important?

Recruitment data helps recruitment and talent acquisition teams make more informed decisions and optimise their recruitment activities. As data like this makes it clear what the best recruitment practices are, as well as if any current trends are affecting your hiring efforts.

To make it easier for in-house recruitment teams to be relevant and have up-to-date information, Eploy, alongside HR Grapevine, carries out an annual survey to determine the candidate sourcing channels and recruitment marketing techniques that deliver the best results. This year it included over 700 recruiters, 90% of whom are from in-house recruitment teams. The collated data has revealed many key findings that could affect and influence your recruitment practices and recruitment marketing techniques, allowing you to attract the best talent in the most effective way. So make sure you download our UK Candidate Attraction Report 2024 and see the latest candidate attraction data.

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