Shrinking talent pool means government should ensure access to EU workers – REC

Today’s labour market statistics published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), based on data from July-September 2017, shows that unemployment fell by 59,000 while vacancies increased slightly. Employment fell slightly by 14,000. Commenting, Recruitment & Employment Confederation chief executive Kevin Green says:

“Employers who are already struggling to fill roles will be concerned to see that the number of people out of work has fallen yet again, reducing the talent pool even further. We have heard again and again from recruiters that they don’t have enough candidates to cope with the increasing number of vacancies.

“The number of people in employment is falling for the first time in two years. EU nationals are returning home and less are arriving as they feel increasingly unwelcome here. We cannot afford to lose their skills and their contribution to the UK labour market. The government needs to make this country attractive to EU workers by ensuring their right to work here.”


Notes to editors:

1. For more information, contact the REC Press Office on 0207 009 2157/2192 or An ISDN line is available for interviews on 0207 021 0584

2. There were 1.42 million unemployed people (people not in work but seeking and available to work), 59,000 fewer than for April to June 2017 and 182,000 fewer than a year earlier.

There were 780,000 job vacancies for August to October 2017. This was up slightly compared with May to July 2017 and up 24,000 compared with a year earlier.

The number of people in employment for Q3 2017 was 14,000 lower than Q2 2017. The last fall in employment numbers was Q1 2015 to Q2 2015, a fall of 45,000.

The full ONS statistical release is available at:

3. Jobs transform lives, which is why we are building the best recruitment industry in the world. As the professional body for recruitment we’re determined to make businesses more successful by helping them secure the people they need. We are absolutely passionate and totally committed in this pursuit for recruiters, employers, and the people they hire. Find out more about the Recruitment & Employment Confederation at