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Q4 2015 Job Market Report: UK Salaries Jump 4.4%


Looking back on the job market in 2015, data from the UK’s largest job site, CV-Library, reveals that Q4 saw a healthy growth in salaries, with a rise of 4.4% in average wages across the UK when comparing advertised salaries in Q4 2015 with those in Q4 2014. This means UK professionals are kicking off January with more money than last year as the average worker is now taking home £33,236.67 a year, up from £31,852.50.

Construction, Automotive and Retail all feature on the list of sectors with the highest growth in advertised salaries between October-December 2015, when compared with the same period in 2014. The top five include:

  1. Construction: 17.1% growth
  2. Media: 16.9% growth
  3. Automotive: 9% growth
  4. Retail: 7.2% growth
  5. Sales: 5.5% growth

As workers look for their next opportunity in 2016 it’s clear that better pay will be a top priority; in addition to growing salaries across key sectors, cities across the UK also saw a spike in wages. The top 5 include:

  1. Hull: 13.4% growth
  2. Cardiff: 7.5% growth
  3. Bristol: 7.1% growth
  4. Leeds: 6.3% growth
  5. Sheffield: 5.8% growth

Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library comments:

“Throughout 2015 CV-Library data revealed a trend of rising salaries, which are indicative of a strong job market, but the growth can also be attributed to the challenge of ‘Candidate Power’ – moving into 2016 job hunters are set to hold all of the cards in recruitment as application rates fail to maintain pace with job growth –improved pay is one critical way in which businesses can attract picky candidates.”

In addition, Q4 2015 showed an impressive 19.1% growth in jobs across the UK when compared with the same period in 2014; however, applications only grew 18.7% resulting in a 0.3% deficit in terms of the number of candidates applying to each role. While this number doesn’t appear too worrying, when compared with Q3 2015, applications dropped by 7.7%, further confirming 2016 as ‘The Year of the Candidate’ in which job hunters can afford to be more selective in a prosperous job market.

Biggins concludes:

“All signs point to a strong job market and bode well for recruitment in 2016; however, the quarterly decline in applications should raise red flags for employers. As the number of candidates applying to each vacancy continues to decline, businesses are going to struggle to attract qualified candidates. Improving pay is a good start, but employers need to look at their recruitment process as a whole to ensure they pull out all the stops in 2016.”

Click here to see the full Q4 2015 Job Market Report.


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CV-Library is one of the UK’s largest online job sites, with the UK’s biggest database of over 10.3m CVs. The company was founded in 2000 as a response to Lee’s identification of a market niche. As a young carpet fitter at the time struggling to find work, Lee saw a need for an easy-to-use job board benefiting both job hunters and recruiters. With a £9k loan and help from a web developer, the CV-Library website was built. Lee’s raw passion and hands-on marketing strategies lifted the business off the ground and it is this that continues to push his company to new heights.

The business is now one of the fastest growing websites in the country. The team is expanding rapidly, now employing over 140 staff. It has also launched sister website, Resume Library, in the US, where the company is set to expand and take the brand global over the coming years. Lee puts the reason for his success down to working incredibly hard, loving what he does and a strong desire to make the business the best it can be.

Lee has received over 50 awards and accolades to date and was last year recognised as Entrepreneur of the Year. In April 2015 CV-Library was also ranked as number 49 in the Sunday Times Profit Track 100.

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