By Daniel Hunter
The Barclays Job Creation Survey 2013, which questioned over 700 UK businesses, has revealed positive news in that 71% of mid-sized businesses are creating jobs this year, up on the previous year (2012: 65%). The majority (79%) of businesses are also not planning any job losses within the next 12 months.
However, 57% of all businesses state they do not want to hire ex-public sector workers, an impression that has remained constant over the past two years (2012: 58%, 2011: 57%).
There are significant differences in hiring intentions for 2013 between sizes of companies:
- Only 48% of small businesses are creating jobs this year — the least likely out of the companies surveyed (2012: 51%).
- 65% of large businesses are planning to create jobs - fewer than last year (2012: 72%).
- 50% of the largest businesses are planning to hire, a significant reduction in hiring intention, compared to previous years (2012: 70%, 2011: 85%).
- Overall 56% of all companies plan to create new jobs this year, which is little changed from last year (2012: 58%).
“Mid-sized businesses have continued to weather the economic storm, and still have room to flourish and grow, which explains their willingness to hire," Ian Stuart, Managing Director, Barclays Corporate Banking, said.
"Comparatively, the UK’s largest companies might not have reduced headcount in recent years in the expectation that the economic conditions would improve. As their people are often multi-skilled they can be moved to other areas within the business, so there’s less of a need to create new jobs.”
Regarding UK businesses’ view of public sector workers and Government initiatives:
- 56% of businesses believe that job growth in the private sector won’t be able to compensate for public sector job losses. However, this is more optimistic than last year (2012: 71%).
- 60% of the UK’s largest companies are now willing to hire ex-public sector workers, showing the biggest change of attitude, compared to last year (2012: 38%). They are also the turnover group most likely to say that ex-public sector workers are “quite well” or “very well” equipped to take on a role in their business.
- 52% of UK businesses believe public sector workers are ‘not very’ or ‘not at all’ equipped to take on a position in their organisations (2012: 53%).
- The vast majority of companies (83%) believe that Government efforts to remove barriers to job creation are having no impact on their business, although this is a slight improvement on last year (2012: 88%).
“The survey shows that the UK’s largest companies are the most interested in taking on public sector workers, as they have skills which can be transferred, yet unfortunately they are less likely to be recruiting this year," Ian Stuart added.
"This continues to leave ex-public sector workers in a challenging position, as the on-going rebalancing of the economy means many have to seek opportunities in the private sector.”
The research also revealed:
- UK businesses are slowly gaining confidence in hiring staff to create business growth than previously, although the majority still remain hesitant with 73% planning to have sales growth lead to job creation as opposed job creation creating sales (2012: 77%).
- Over a quarter (26%) said a reduction in employers’ National Insurance contributions would have a major change on the job market. This makes the Chancellor’s recent Budget announcement to waive the first £2000 of employers’ contributions exactly what businesses want.
- Just over a third (36%) of businesses believe the “Shares for Rights”** scheme, designed for high growth SMEs, will not be popular among small businesses and a quarter (26%) think it will. 30% of businesses had not heard of it.
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