According to the latest research, UK businesses have continued to take on contractors to carry out professional and management level jobs, instead of hiring permanent workers.
The report, conducted by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo), have found that the demand for permanent staff has declined over the past 12 months, as the economic climate has caused businesses to rely more on freelancers.
The APSCo research revealed that the number of temporary placements in professional staffing categories rose by 4% last year, whereas permanent placements dropped by 2%.
IT contractors will also be interested to hear the IT sector did particularly well in 2012, with figures showing that the number of temporary IT placements rose by over 6% last year.
Ann Swain, Chief Executive for APSCo, explains, “We have seen positive news on employment recently with the Office for National Statistics reporting both an overall fall in unemployment and a rise in the number of permanent jobs.
However, we have not yet seen that trend reflected in the hiring of professional level staff – in fact, employers’ preference for offering temporary contracts has intensified right through to the end of the year.”
She added, “Permanent hires can be a big financial commitment – aside from the immediate salary costs, employers will also need to think about pension payments and other factors such as liability for any possible redundancy payments.
Rather than making permanent hires, many businesses may want to wait and see what 2013 will bring.
While 2012 has not been a great year for job-hunters prioritising long-term security, a temporary role could offer professional staff the chance to broaden their experience and gain some additional skills.”
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