Private sector hiring intentions reach six year high says report

Graham Randall

Graham Randall

Businesses’ hiring intentions have reached a six year high.

This is according to the latest Business Trends report by Bristol-based accountants and business advisers BDO LLP.

BDO’s Employment Index rose from 102.7 in February to 104.3 in March.

This jump shows businesses’ hiring expectations are at their highest level since June 2008, pointing to expansion in the labour market.

This is markedly above trend and suggests that recent falls in unemployment will continue in 2014.

Confidence in employment growth is mirrored by a rise in optimism, according to the report.

Graham Randall, partner and head of BDO LLP in Bristol, comments: “After a difficult few years, the above-trend growth we’re seeing in businesses’ hiring intentions bodes well for George Osborne ahead of the election.

“The Chancellor cannily qualified his recent pledge to create a ‘full employment’ economy.

“But with growth strongly on track and employment levels rising, he may be able to claim success sooner than might be expected.

“Just as importantly, our data sheds an interesting light on the immigration debate. Our data shows that employers are growing their hiring intentions month on month.

“If we are to avoid skills shortages and the wage inflation that will inevitably follow, we are going to need to attract more workers to our shores.”