Fastest Job Postings Growth over the Last Year Was in the North East

The UK Labour Market Review: August 2023

Published on Aug 18, 2023

The UK Labour Market Review

The Office for National Statistics’ (ONS) August 2023 Labour Market Overview revealed the following trends in unemployment, salary, and job vacancy data:

  • An increase of 0.3% in the unemployment rate from April to June to 4.2%.

  • The highest annual growth rate in regular pay since comparable records began in 2001 at 7.8%.

  • A 13th successive fall in job vacancies, this time by 66,000 from April to June.

ONS Unemployment, Earnings & Vacancy Data

In this month’s Lightcast UK Labour Market Review, as well as our usual look at recent trends in the number of job postings and salaries being offered by employers, we also take a look at the occupations and skills that have seen the fastest growth in employer demand across the UK’s 12 regions over the last year.

Overall recruitment demand continues to be stable

The number of jobs being posted online continues to be fairly stable, at around one million per month on a three-month rolling average. This is the case for both graduate and non-graduate roles, albeit both saw a very slight uptick from the previous month. Looking at July specifically, there was a slight decrease in postings to 970,000, but this may simply be indicative of the start of the annual summer slowdown in recruitment activity.

Advertised salaries for non-graduate roles are 11% higher than 12 months ago

Although the ONS data mentioned above shows an annual rise in actual wages of 7.8% between April and June, our data for July shows median advertised salaries for all jobs stabilising at around £32,400. This follows a rapid rise in 2022 and the first few months of 2023. What is particularly interesting is that whereas advertised salaries for graduates are around the same as they were 12 months ago, those for non-graduate roles are now at £26,800, which is 11% higher than this time last year. 

The fastest growth in job postings over the past 12 months has been in the North East

The map below looks at both total job posting growth over the last year in each of the UK’s 12 regions, plus an in-depth view of their 5 fastest growing occupations. 

For the total job posting growth, what stands out is the significant differences in rates of change across the country. The North East, for instance, saw a 55% increase in job postings, with the South East and South West also showing large increases of 44% and 38% respectively. On the other hand, London saw 7% fewer postings in July 2023 than a year prior, with Northern Ireland and Scotland also seeing a fall of 21% and 7% respectively.

If you hover your cursor over any of the regions, you’ll see their 5 fastest growing occupations over the last year, and we’ve also included the median advertised salary for each. For this, we’ve used the Specialised Occupations from our Lightcast Occupations Taxonomy, and we’ve only included occupations that have had more than 500 postings over the last year. There are some interesting similarities across the regions, with occupations such as Tutor; Interpreter/Translator; and Animal Care Worker/Manager appearing in the top 5s of multiple regions. There are also some interesting differences. For example, Litigation Lawyer in Yorkshire and Humber; Family/Behavioural Therapist in London; and Dentist in East Midlands.

Fastest growing skills across the UK’s 12 regions

The final chart in this month’s Review looks at the fastest growing specialised skills over the past 12 months across the UK’s regions (again, we've applied a filter to exclude skills with fewer than 500 postings over the year). As with the occupation data above, there are a number of similarities across the areas, as well as a number of interesting differences. 

In terms of similarities, due diligence and medical prescription are hot skills, both appearing in seven of the 12 regions, whilst learning styles is seen in six.

There are also plenty of interesting skills that are only seen in one region, and in fact every single area has at least one skill in the top 10 that none of the others have. These include: leisure and recreation (North East); information policy (North West); renewable energy (Yorks & Humber); science education (East Midlands); customer relationship management (CRM) software (West Midlands); talent management (East of England); IOS Applications (London); dentistry (South East); pathology (South West); activities of daily living (ADLs) (Northern Ireland); fabrication (Scotland); data entry (Wales).

Elena Magrini, Lightcast's Head of Global Research commented:

"As ever, there are a number of takeaways from our data, but there are a couple that are really noteworthy this month. The first is that growth in advertised salaries for non-graduate positions is outstripping those for graduate roles, with our data showing that whilst those for graduate positions are around the same as this time last year, those for non-graduate jobs have grown by about 11% over the past 12 months. 

The second major takeaway is the data relating to growth in job postings across the UK’s 12 regions. The biggest growth in the country has been the North East, with 55% more job postings in July 2023 than 12 months prior, whereas London – perhaps surprisingly – saw a 7% decline in postings over the same period."

We’ll be back with another UK Labour Market Review after the September ONS release.

Let's work together to unlock new potential in your labour market.