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08 December 2015

• East Midlands salaries increase by 1.7% in 2015, yet growth lags behind national average
• 64% of employers in region confident that business activity levels will increase in next 12 months
• War for talent intensifies as 75% of employers looking to hire additional staff but 61% of employees expect to move jobs in 2016
• Employees in the construction sector see biggest jump in salary but over half of workforce expect to quit next year

According to the Hays UK Salary & Recruiting Trends 2016 report, which includes a survey of over 1,000 employers and employees in the East Midlands, increased confidence in the region’s economy and a more fluid jobs market will not only lead to an increase in hiring next year but will see employers come under unprecedented pressure to raise pay. 

The analysis of data from Hays job listings, job offers and candidate registrations showed the region’s salaries for qualified, professional and skilled workers grew on average 1.7% in 2015, slower than the national growth of 2.3%. The average professional salary for the region is now £43,549, with employees in the construction sector seeing the biggest growth of 3%.

However, the survey shows that pressure over pay is only set to intensify next year. Three quarters (75%) of Nottingham  employers anticipate raising pay in 2016 and nearly one in three (31%) expect to award salary increases of above 2.5%.

The report also indicates that confidence in the region’s economy is high. In Nottingham alone, 74% of employers expect business activity to increase next year and 83% expect to recruit more staff.

However, it appears that the combination of increased economic confidence and slower salary growth may have consequences for staff retention, with three fifths (64%) of employees in Nottingham expecting to move jobs in 2016.

With almost three in five East Midlands employees (57%) dissatisfied with their current salary and nearly a third (32%) expecting to move jobs over pay, it would appear that employers will need to dig deeper into their pockets to retain their best talent and take on additional work next year.

[1]Findings based on responses from 158 construction employers and employees in the East Midlands

Region’s skills shortage continues
A more fluid jobs market and dissatisfaction with pay will be compounded by the region’s skills shortage, putting further pressure on employers to pay even more for the talent they need. Over three quarters (78%) of East Midlands employers say they are already concerned that they will encounter a shortage of suitable candidates and almost a third (29%) say they currently don’t have the talent they need to achieve their business objectives.

Challenges ahead for construction sector
Despite enjoying the region’s largest salary increases this year with rise of 3%, the construction sector faces a significant exodus of staff with over half (57%) of employees expecting to change jobs within the next 12 months. Confidence in the East Midlands’ construction sector is clearly high, with four fifths (79%) of construction companies expecting business activity to increase next year and a similar number (81%) expecting to recruit, and employers will need to work harder to retain and attract staff in order to take on additional work. It appears construction firms are attempting to address this migration, with four fifths (78%) expecting to increase salaries in 2016.

[2] Findings based on responses from 158 construction employers and employees in the East Midlands

Mark Staniland, Managing Director of Hays Midlands Region, said:
“We are noticing an increased confidence in the East Midlands economy, particularly in the construction sector, and many businesses expect to increase their headcount to meet demand in 2016. However, while many companies raised pay, salaries in the East Midlands have grown at a slower rate than in many other regions and employees are becoming increasingly frustrated. Candidates’ power in the jobs market is growing and many intend to move on next year in search of better pay.”

“A startling number of businesses across the Midlands have grave concerns about the region’s skills shortage and employers who can’t offer competitive remuneration packages will find it increasingly difficult to attract top talent. This could prevent many East Midlands businesses from growing to their full potential in 2016.”

“Retaining and attracting talent will prove a particular issue for the East Midlands construction sector in 2016. The industry’s expectations for 2016 are high, buoyed by large regeneration projects such as the multimillion-pound redevelopment of Nottingham’s Broadmarsh Centre. However, with most of the region’s construction professionals set to move jobs in 2016, many businesses will find it difficult to field the staff numbers required to meet increasing demand. The most skilled workers will command premium salaries and employers will need to dig deep into their pockets if they’re to attract and retain the sector’s top talent.”


For further press information please contact:

Kathryn Iacono
T: 0207 200 3760

About Hays UK Salary & Recruiting Trends 2016
Data compiled using data gathered during 2015 from Hays offices across the UK, based on job listings, job offers and candidate registrations. Survey responses from 20,000 employers and employees from organisations of all sizes throughout the UK.

About Hays
Hays plc (the "Group") is a leading global professional recruiting group. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 30 June 2015 the Group employed 9,023 staff operating from 240 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2015:

– the Group reported net fees of £764.2 million and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £164.1 million;
– the Group placed around 63,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 200,000 people into temporary assignments;
– 23% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific, 41% in Continental Europe & RoW (CERoW) and 36% in the United Kingdom & Ireland;
– the temporary placement business represented 58% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 42% of net fees;
– Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA