Scots job market continues to improve

Scottish labour market conditions continued to improve in September, with sharp growth being recorded in both permanent placements and temporary staff billings, according to the latest Royal Bank of Scotland Report on Jobs.

At the same time, pay pressures intensified, with rates of starting salary and temp wage inflation accelerating since August.

“Imbalances between staff demand and supply remained however, with candidate availability deteriorating markedly while job vacancies continued to rise,” said the report.

“Sustained growth in permanent staff placements was signalled by Scottish recruitment consultancies in September.

“Moreover, the pace of expansion quickened to the fastest since July 2014 and outpaced the UK average.

“Sharp growth in temporary/contract staff billings was also observed in Scotland during the latest survey period, despite the rate of increase easing slightly since August.”

Job openings in Scotland continued to rise at a robust pace in September.

Permanent vacancies rose markedly and at the quickest pace in three months.

Salaries awarded to newly-placed staff in Scotland continued to rise in the latest survey period.

Scottish recruitment consultancies signalled sharp growth in starting salaries for permanent staff, in which the rate of inflation accelerated to an eight-month high.

Sebastian Burnside, Chief Economist at Royal Bank of Scotland, said: “Although the availability of labour continued to decline in September, Scottish recruitment agencies continued to signal sharp growth in staff appointments, both permanent and short-term.

“Hiring intentions also remained robust, with permanent and temporary job vacancies rising at faster rates.

“This, in conjunction with poor candidate availability, translated into further stronger pressures.

“The survey showed that temp wages and starting salaries both rose at accelerated rates at the end of the third quarter.”