Weekly vacancy analysis: Vacancy trends in week-ending 5 July 2020

Papoutsaki D, Williams M |   | Institute for Employment Studies  | Jul 2020

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This is the thirteenth and last weekly briefing looking at changes in vacancies since the Covid-19 crisis began. The work is funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and uses vacancy data collected by the job search engine Adzuna. This briefing covers vacancies up to Sunday 5 July 2020. The briefing sets out analysis of new vacancies, overall vacancy levels, and vacancies by area, job type and salary band.

As set out in the second briefing note, we use week ending 15 March (2nd week in March in text) when making comparisons with pre-crisis data.

Last week there were 110 thousand new vacancies notified (shown in Figure 1).  This is a modest increase compared to last week, when fewer than 90 thousand new vacancies were advertised.  This low figure suggests that, just like last week, the easing of lockdown has not yet led to any significant rebound in hiring.  New vacancy notifications are 70 per cent lower than for the equivalent week last year, and 50 per cent lower than in the week before the crisis began.

The overall level of vacancies at 5 July was 361 thousand (shown in Figure 2).  Following a fall in new hiring last week, this week the overall level of vacancies decreased slightly by 26 thousand vacancies. Vacancy levels remain lower by more than 450 thousand posts than before the crisis began, and there are 650 thousand fewer vacancies than at the same time last year.

This week’s vacancy data show that the fragile recovery seen a few weeks ago seems to have fizzled out, even as lockdown measures have been eased.  This likely reflects both the continuing high uncertainty among employers and the significant spare capacity that many employers will have with employees starting to return to work from the Job Retention Scheme.