By Daniel Hunter

UK businesses are feeling confident about increasing revenue and headcount in the year ahead, while more than three quarters may increase salaries, according to research released today by leading recruiter Adecco.

The poll of more than 100 employers paints an upbeat picture, with 40% of businesses surveyed saying that they are confident that their company will grow this year and that they expect to increase headcount.

This compares to just 23% who think growth is unlikely. Indeed, for 61% of those surveyed growth is their main focus for 2012, with Sales and New Business expected to generate this. Just 7% are looking to consolidate their business within the next twelve months.

38% of organisations predict that they will need to hire both permanent and temporary staff to support their objectives. The key areas where they are looking to increase their staffing levels are Sales, Customer Services and Operations.

Up to 78% of UK businesses may also boost employees’ salaries in 2012. Many companies (38%) are committed to increasing salaries this year or have already increased them, with a further 40% still undecided but considering a rise in wages.

“These figures show that there is a cautious sense of positivity out there. While cost control is still important, many UK businesses are taking steps to recovery following the recession and the period of caution which has followed it," Steven Kirkpatrick, Managing Director at Adecco UK & Ireland, said.

“The focus on both permanent and temporary roles is especially positive, suggesting that many organisations are confident enough to make the commitment to long-term staff, and also that new legislation such as the Agency Workers’ Regulations has not had a negative impact on temporary roles. This positive feeling suggests that 2012 might be the year that the economy shows signs of recovery.”

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