The UK financial sector continues to bounce back from the pandemic as hiring activity reaches an all-time high. The current senior finance job market is characterised by increasing demand for staff at every level, but with a shortage of skills and low candidate supply leading to a record number of vacancies.
While jobs within the ‘executive and professional’ category have the slowest increase, they are still experiencing a sharp jump in demand. The London job market continues to perform strongly, while the North of England experiences the highest growth of any region.
Recent research from ONS shows that current permanent vacancies are at a record high – 30% higher than they were at their last pre-pandemic peek in 2019.
This data shows the complexity of the finance job market in the wake of Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic. While recruitment activity continues to increase, there is a limited talent pool of skilled workers and a reluctance to change positions during this period of economic uncertainty.
ONS research suggests that the candidate supply is falling at an almost record pace as companies struggle to fill permanent vacancies.
The accounting and financial sector is experiencing a rise in unfilled permanent vacancies that is comparable to medical professionals and engineering. In the three months leading to August, the UK had over 1.03 million vacancies, the first time this figure has broken 1 million.
The job market makes for complex reading. The increase in job vacancies across industries is primarily due to low-paying jobs. Comparatively, opportunities within the financial sector remaining vacant due to limited candidate pools.
New job openings in June saw a 20% increase above the levels seen before the start of the pandemic. There is a clear potential for high-quality candidates to capitalise on these vacancies.
While the financial job market continues to recover from the impact of the pandemic, there is a clear need for high-skilled financial professionals to fill the growing vacancies across the United Kingdom. The increase in starting salaries shows that companies are committing to growing their workforce and presence throughout the UK, including within financial services.
FD Capital provides senior finance roles for businesses across the UK, focusing on interim, part-time, and full-time Chief Financial Officers and Financial Directors. They work with businesses across different sectors that require financial professionals as part of their leadership or C-Suite team.
Adrian Lawrence, MD of FD Capital, says “The strong rise in hiring activity is very positive. We are seeing a very competitive market. There is still uncertainty in the market but the number of opportunities we are seeing on a weekly basis has increased by nearly 90%”.