ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey - Q2 2024

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  • UK Employment Outlook for Q2 2024 (April – June) is +23%, indicating cautious optimism

  • Both defensive and offensive hiring strategies are evident as managers adopt chess-like workforce planning tactics by backfilling roles due to employee departures (39%) versus actively creating new positions (36%) going into the next quarter

  • Small organisations demonstrate greatest appetite for new hires in Q2, with almost a third of UK businesses surveyed (28%) planning to hire 10 or more staff

The latest ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey indicates UK employers are applying calculated, chess-like hiring tactics to their recruitment plans for the coming quarter (April – June 2024), as backfilling roles and economic caution lead some to maintain a defensive stance, while others are going on the offensive and creating new positions in anticipation of future growth.

As the UK navigates its way out of the shallow recession recorded in the second half of 2023, the Survey’s seasonally adjusted Q2 Net Employment Outlook remains robust and positive at +23%. This represents a slight quarter-on-quarter decrease of -4 percentage-points, but a year-on-year uptick of +1 percentage-point. It also places the UK +1 percentage-point above the global Q2 Survey average of +22% and +8 points above the EMEA regional Survey average.

“Tactically, the UK job market for Q2 is looking increasingly like a chess game. UK small businesses are playing offense, showing the biggest appetite for business expansion, and creating new roles,” observes Michael Stull, ManpowerGroup UK’s Managing Director. “While they look to hire talent displaced by the redundancies that hit multiple sectors last year, bigger organisations are taking a more defensive stance by backfilling vacancies and being more cautious about headcount.”

UK employers in small organisations with 10-49 workers are indeed the most optimistic going into Q2, with a Net Employment Outlook of +29%. This is up +12 points quarter-on-quarter and +11 points on the year and places the UK second overall for small business hiring confidence amongst the 42 international markets included in the ManpowerGroup Survey.

ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey

ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey