November 2022 market overview: commerce and industry

Author Stephanie McCleery
December 9, 2022

Across the UK’s commerce and industry sectors, we’ve pulled together a review of the live data we have captured in November – covering London, Home Counties, West Midlands and Southwest England.

The final push before Christmas

In the run up to Christmas, the market usually sees a final influx of new jobs from businesses who are keen to secure talent before the Christmas break or at least to move through interview stages.

We started to see that already this November. This is always promising, especially in a market that’s still quite cautious in the HR world. The number of vacancies coming through the door were similar to October but the number of appointed roles increased by 36%.

We saw slight caution from businesses when making appointments in September and October due to the uncertainty of what was ahead. But we actually saw a reasonably strong push for appointments during November and interview numbers were back up. So, we aren’t seeing that slowdown into December at that we anticipated.

“We saw a strong push for appointments during November and interview numbers were back up.”

Sectors leading the charge

We have seen continued growth in the technology sector with 27% of new vacancies. For the third month running, areas of non-profit, manufacturing, leisure and tourism, and education grew too. The life sciences and pharmaceuticals spaces also increased activity. We have seen this mostly from businesses in the start-up and scale-up phase. 

However, there are areas that have dipped slightly – including retail, transport, logistics and distribution. Typically, these likely ramped up operations before their usually busy time of year which was a couple of months ago, so this isn’t concerning.

Large, household names reducing talent acquisition teams

Although the economy is in one of its worst states for decades, it is still quite positive for the HR job market. Of course, talk of cutbacks is hitting some businesses hard and we have seen this especially in technology’s talent acquisition (TA) space.

You’ve probably seen in the media that many large, household names are reducing TA teams dramatically. But when we look at the overall year, these same businesses scaled up enormously to cope with demand and, unfortunately, TA teams seem to be cut back when reducing spend within an organisation. This reflects with what we have seen with the high volume of candidates in this area now looking for work and the limited opportunities out there. 

“TA teams seem to be cut back when reducing spend within an organisation.”

Regarding the roles being hired into, within the HR space we saw 53% of vacancies come from a generalist discipline, including learning and development. 35% were from a specialist payroll or reward area and, as expected, only 12% of roles came from the TA space in November.

It’s the most interesting time of the year

With a few more weeks to go until the end of the year, it will be interesting to see how December pans out. We may see the usual last-minute rush to secure talent or businesses might wait until after the Christmas break for start a fresh come January! Watch this space for next month’s market update.

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