The introduction of a three-tier lockdown system in the UK has seen the number of job vacancies fall.

This is according to job platform Broadbean Technology, which found that for the week ending 11 October, job vacancies in the UK dropped by 6% compared with the previous week.

Last week Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the introduction of a three-tier lockdown system in the UK, with an alert set at medium, high, and very high depending on the number of Covid-19 cases in a specific area.

Despite the slump in job vacancies, they are still up 39% compared with the first week of September.

According to Broadbean’s data, much of the decline in job vacancies was reported in cities that have been hit hardest by the second wave of Covid-19 cases, with Manchester and Birmingham seeing the number of advertised roles drop by 8% and 5% respectively.

Broadbean also analysed the number of applicants per vacancy (APV), revealing that travel and tourism – some of the hardest-hit industries – saw APV levels drop by 70% month-on-month. Across administration and secretarial roles, the APV level dropped 36%.

This suggests that many employees are returning to work after furlough or they are seeking jobs in other industries. This is compared with a rise in APV of 170% between March and May.

Alex Fourlis, managing director at Broadbean Technology, said:

“While there’s no denying that the UK is facing tough times with regional lockdowns being implemented on a larger scale than in recent months and talks of a national circuit breaker lockdown on the cards, our figures demonstrate that it is by no means all doom and gloom. Vacancy levels have dropped over the last week, however, when looking at month-on-month figures, we are seeing them increase at a healthy level, demonstrating that the jobs market is remaining resilient in the current client.

“And with APV numbers levelling out across some of the hardest-hit industries, and nearly returning to ’normal’, there is certainly an air of optimism across the recruitment landscape. Of course, we can’t deny that the UK faces continued uncertainty, with the furlough scheme coming to an end in a few short weeks, and levels of Covid-19 continuing to increase. However, with employers better able to facilitate remote working and stay operational in times of lockdown, we are quietly confident that we won’t see the negative vacancy growth that we witnessed earlier this year.”


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