Midlands jobs up 9% for Q1 year on year

  • Jobs growth was strongest in the legal sector (15%), with procurement (7%), and IT (4%) also seeing robust growth.

The latest Robert Walters UK Jobs Index, which tracks the number of jobs available and jobseeking professionals in the Midlands month-by-month, has revealed that vacancies rose by 9% in the first quarter of 2016 compared to the same period last year.

BUSINESS GROWTH AND PROSPERING TECH STARTUPS DRIVE DEMAND FOR PROCUREMENT AND IT PROFESSIONALS

Outside of the legal sector, professionals in procurement and IT saw the highest demand for their skills, with the number of jobs growing by 7% and 4% respectively.

As businesses look to grow, developing efficient procurement strategies has become an increasingly high priority, driving demand for these professionals.

Meanwhile, as Birmingham continues to develop its reputation as a major UK hub for tech startups, demand for IT professionals has seen steady growth in the region.

Chris Poole continues:

“With employers viewing efficient procurement strategies as an increasingly integral ingredient for success, demand for supply chain and procurement professionals is rising.”

“In particular, professionals in these fields who can provide strategic insights and work as partners within the business to develop policies with other departments are very much sought after.”

“Among IT firms, demand is highest for specialists in testing, support, business analysis and program management.”

“Recent high profile data security breaches involving large firms has also seen demand rise significantly for cyber security specialists, with major employers in banking and financial services in the region increasing hiring after recruitment freezes in 2015.”

“However, many employers are struggling to attract permanent staff into these positions. As demand for IT professionals has increased, many have moved from permanent roles into short term contracts where they can attract higher salaries.”

DEMAND RISING FOR LEGAL SPECIALISTS IN CORPORATE AND PROPERTY FIELDS

The research showed that jobs in the legal sector saw the strongest growth at 15%, with increased demand for corporate and property lawyers playing a leading role in the uptick.

Chris Poole, Managing Director, Robert Walters Birmingham, comments:

“Employers in the FMCG, automotive, e-commerce and retail sectors have all shown increased activity in recruiting legal talent for in-house roles.”

“A significant part of this growth has been driven by a rise in mergers and acquisitions with this activity spurred by growing market confidence. This in turn is driving demand for corporate law specialists.”

“Increasing activity in construction, real estate and urban planning is also impacting the demand for legal professionals triggering a rise in demand for property lawyers.”

“Overall, this has created an environment where legal professionals are in high demand, with employers facing an acute shortage of candidates.”

For further information, please contact Alan O'Doherty on alan.odoherty@robertwalters.com or 020 7509 8839