Human Resources – Midlands Jobs Market Update

  • 19/01/2018
  • 01:00
  • Adecco Group
  • Recruitment

2017 was a turbulent year for the world – North Korea test fired ballistic missiles, Catalonia voted for independence, Donald Trump was sworn in as US president.

It was a busy year for HR professionals – tribunal fees were abolished, gender pay gap reporting regulations came into force, and GDPR became the hottest buzzword as HR teams scrambled to review employment contracts, privacy notices and appoint data protection officers in a bid to avoid fines when regulations come into force in May 2018.

So, how did all this affect the HR jobs market?

On the face of it, it was business as usual for the Badenoch & Clark Midlands HR division – placing pretty much the same number of candidates in 2017 as they did in 2016, and up 33% on 2015:

However, when we look at the detail there are some interesting trends forming:

As this graph shows, vacancies received by Badenoch & Clark for HR staff is down 13% year on year. This is supported by job website Indeed which has seen a reduction year on year for HR vacancies posted to their website. However, we have also seen a 6% increase in vacancies filled:

However, we have also seen an 8% increase in vacancies filled:

It appears that while there are fewer vacancies in the market, more are being filled – demonstrating a more cautious approach to recruitment, with many companies taking the time to assess, budget and fully sign off a new vacancy before entering the market as a more committed recruiter than in the past.

In-demand roles

We have seen a rise in Learning & Development vacancies – up 7% year on year - demonstrating companies are continuing to invest in their L&D departments. Closer analysis of these vacancies shows most were at the more senior end of the market and predominantly management. This could point to companies looking to more closely align L&D to business strategy, ensuring L&D leaders have the ability to work with senior stakeholders and deliver an L&D strategy that compliments the goals of the organisation. 

There has been a very noticeable reduction in the number of HR Business Partner positions, down 18% from 2016. This is a surprising trend as in other business areas, such as Finance, we have seen a marked increase in Business Partner vacancies. Perhaps this stems from companies looking to centralise back office functions and therefore losing the regional business partner? This seems to be backed up with a strong showing in HR Advisor vacancies which grew 8% year on year.

In terms of a forecast for 2018, Badenoch & Clark expect to see an increase in the number of HR Systems, Data and Reporting specialist requirements. Many companies have invested in their HR systems during 2017 and this is expected to continue into 2018 – especially with the increase in reporting requirements on diversity issues and upcoming GDPR considerations.