A look at the Second Quarter Labour Market results
Zero hours contracts, minimum wage, employment statistics – all of these can and do become political footballs for the different parties to kick around. But what do the latest results tell us about real jobs and real lives?
What are the Labour Market Statistics?
Prepared by the Office for National Statistics, they are announced four times a year and relate to the quarter of the year that has just finished. So the Second Quarter results (announced at the end of July) ran from April to June 2015.
What do they tell us about employment?
The key question each quarter is whether unemployment has risen or fallen.
The Second Quarter results were:
Employment rate: 72.4% April to June 2015
Unemployment rate: 5.6% April to June 2015
The number of people in employment is now 31.03 million, a fall of 63,000 from the First Quarter of the Year (January to March)
The number of unemployed people is now 1.85 million, an increase of 25,000 from the First Quarter of the Year (January to March).
So in this quarter unemployment rose: more people were out of work in the Second Quarter of the year than in the First Quarter.
Note that some people who left employment may not be unemployed; for example, they may have retired.
Which careers offer the best chance of employment?
If you are still deciding about your career, it’s worth looking at which sectors are currently hiring at a greater rate than others.
Based on job postings, we can see that job postings in IT, nursing and business admin and sales are high, with most increasing from the Second Quarter of last year.
Here are the top 10 occupations as far as job postings:
- Programmers and software development professionals
- Other administrative occupations
- Business sales executives
- IT business analysts, architects and systems designers
- Web design and development professionals
- Managers and proprietors in other services
- Sales accounts and business development managers
- Management consultants and business analysts
- Human resources and industrial relations officers
Can an apprenticeship help me get into these careers?
In many cases, an apprenticeship can be a good route into a career as you gain valuable experience and qualifications – as well as being paid to learn.
Apprenticeships are available in many of the growing sectors, such as business administration, sales management and IT.
In conclusion, it remains to be seen if the second quarter results are a blip or indicate the start of a downward trend in employment. Meanwhile, if you’re considering your career options, there are skill shortages in particular sectors – so it’s worth looking at training and apprenticeship options.