The report highlighted that:
- The number of overall placements grew at its fastest rate for more than two years
- Permanent worker demand increased at its strongest rate for 29 months
- Temporary / Contract worker demand increased at its strongest rate for 22 months
- The IT sector was the third best for Contract & Permanent Jobs
- The number of candidates in the market once again increase from November to December 2009
- Salaries for Permanent workers increased for the second month running at the fastest rate for 18 months
- Hourly contract pay rates reduced marginally for the 15th month in succession
Overall the findings point to a recovery in the UK Economy and the job market as a whole. Companies appear to be cautiously proceeding with projects which were put on hold in 2009 (leading to a greater number of temporary contracts) and are restocking their permanent workforces after cutting back last year. Although the number of placements is increasing the pay rates are still falling although they appear to be nearing the bottom of the curve. Companies know that supply is strong and are unwilling to pay over the odds for professional IT workers.
However, the recovery may fall away slightly in 2010 as the Government (probably Conservative following the General Election later this year) gets to grips with things and scales back significant public sector investment.
Changes to UK Immigration policy may also have an affect. In 2010 the UK Border Agency is expected to reduce the educational requirement of Tier 1 General (formerly HSMP) from a Masters Degree to a Bachelors Degree following positive findings from the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC). This will result in thousands of new highly skilled workers migrating to the UK and many skilled workers already in the UK on UK Work Permits transferring to Tier 1 General. Many Indian IT professionals in particular with international consultancies such as Tata, Infosys, Wipro etc have sat tight in their seconded roles however many will be looking to move on in 2010. Any increase to the supply of labour will undoubtedly see contract rates and permanent salaries either remain the same or decrease as employers benefit from greater choice.
Overall early 2010 looks very positive for Permanent & Contract recruitment in Information Technology. If you are an International IT professional and you are considering migrating to the UK under Tier 1 General please contact Commonwealth Contractors for detailed information on your individual circumstances.
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