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Procurement vacancies on the rise

The number of UK procurement jobs has expanded by 8% year-on-year, according to our latest UK Jobs Index, indicating a steady increase in employer demand for procurement talent. 

Research reveals that the increase in procurement roles is most pronounced in the North West with a rise of 10% quarter on quarter, and London and the South East also experienced healthy growth of 7%. This increase saw many employers competing to acquire the highest quality professionals. 

"While contract roles are still available, more employers now have the resources to hire permanent roles and convert candidates originally brought on board on a contract basis to permanent employees," says James Franklin, manager for procurement and supply chain recruitment at Robert Walters.

"Despite this, many candidates continue to favour the higher rates available through contract work, particularly given the high demand for their skills, causing a competitive candidate-driven market."

UK hiring trends

The upturn in the economy and resulting prosperity of SMEs has led to demand for generalist procurement professionals, as these smaller firms become confident enough to invest in new talent. Additionally, the continued emergence of new procurement consultancies keen to expand their teams due to increased projects, has also assisted in the growth of available roles. James continues:

"The greatest demand is for mid-level candidates with five to ten years experience, alongside interim roles at the senior level. We are still seeing a demand for more junior professionals but is less pronounced."

More employers now have the resources to hire permanent roles and convert candidates originally brought on board on a contract basis to permanent employees.

Skills in demand

The market has also shown demand this quarter for procurement professionals with specific skills sets and experience. James says:

"Category managers in marketing, human resources and facilities have all been highly sought after, as have candidates with both strategic and operational experience. This has been observed across both financial services and within commerce and industry."

About the UK Job Index

The Robert Walters UK Job Index tracks job advertisement volumes over leading job boards across the UK in sectors such as banking & finance, risk, compliance, marketing, IT, legal, tax, sales, secretarial and support, HR and procurement and supply chain.

Released on a quarterly basis, the report provides an indicative summary of recruitment activity being experienced across major national markets as well as key industry comparisons.

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