Brands signal ‘encouraging’ employment prospects despite ‘challenging’ conditions

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One in 10 marketers (11.6%) are expecting job cuts within their companies over the next three months, the highest percentage since the first quarter of 2021 when Covid-19 restrictions were still in place.

On the other hand, 38.4% expect to hire new staff, just 0.4% less than in the first quarter of this year, according to IPA Bellwether data gathered exclusively for Marketing Week.

Half of respondents expect staffing levels within their firms to remain the same over the next quarter, resulting in a net balance of +26.8%. While this marks a drop from the +31.6% recorded in Q1, it is still a “strong” figure by historical standards.

“Despite growing evidence of deteriorating economic conditions, we continue to see strong hiring intentions among Bellwether panellists,” the report says.

Employment prospects data were an encouraging short-term signal overall, suggesting that the broad majority of companies (88.4%) expect to either at least retain their existing workforce or add to it.

However, some respondents expressed concern about the “challenging conditions” within the UK labour market, citing skills shortages and rising wage pressures. In some cases, panellists were worried employees would leave their business in pursuit of higher pay.

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