Headlines: October 31st, 2011

There has been a substantial rise in public sector job vacancies in October according to figures published today. This increase is in line with earlier indications that staff cuts were front loaded in the earlier part of the financial year

The Reed Job Index shows demand in the public sector is 9 points higher compared to September, when it stood at 66. Each month the Reed Job Index tracks the number of new job opportunities compared to the previous month and against a baseline of 100 set in December 2009. The Reed Job Index is based on data from the UK’s largest job board, reed.co.uk, which every day lists over 100,000 job opportunities from more than 9,000 recruiters across 37 career sectors throughout the UK.

Statistics from the Office for Budget Responsibility show that the public sector lost almost a quarter of a million jobs in the Government’s first year of office, with job losses in Q1 of this financial year already five times greater than that projected for the entire year. This rise in vacancies could indicate a turning point for staff cuts. More cuts are planned for the following years, but the scale is likely to be greatly reduced.

The Reed Index for all sectors rose by 7 per cent, compared to September 2011. This reverses the decline in job demand in Q3 of this year, and brings the number of new job opportunities on offer back up to the levels last seen in Q1.

Employer demand is 23 points higher year on year, and is 29 per cent above the level of December 2009 when the Index baseline was set at 100. The 7 per cent increase is the largest month on month rise recorded since the Reed Job Index began 22 months ago.