By Claire West

The latest Bank of Scotland Report on Jobs showed growth of staff placements pick up in May, reversing a slowdown in the previous month. Strong demand for new employees drove the upturn, and meanwhile contributed to marked increases in both permanent starting salaries and hourly pay rates for temporary staff.

Placing further upward pressure on remuneration was a lack of available candidates, with the rate of decline in permanent candidate supply one of the fastest in the history of the survey.

May saw the Bank of Scotland Labour Market Barometer — a composite indicator designed to provide a single figure snapshot of labour market conditions — dip to 61.8, from 62.5 in April. The latest reading was consistent with a substantial improvement in labour market conditions north of the border, albeit one that was the least marked for seven months. The barometer was also below its UK equivalent for the second month running.

Donald MacRae, Chief Economist at Bank of Scotland, commented: “May’s Barometer showed the Scottish labour market continuing to improve. Not only did the number of people appointed to both permanent and temporary jobs increase over the month but vacancies grew at a robust rate. The number of candidates available for permanent jobs fell resulting in a noticeable increase in permanent salaries. This month’s Barometer provides further evidence that the recovery in the Scottish economy will continue throughout 2014.”

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