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Press Release

Friday 30th March 2018

More employers make hiring plans as Brexit countdown begins – REC

The latest Jobs Outlook survey by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) of 600 employers again shows that employers are still concerned about hiring but they can’t put off their hiring plans any longer.

Short-term hiring plans remain similar to last month, with 15 per cent of respective employers planning to increase permanent staff and 16 per cent planning to increase their temporary workforce.

REC director of policy Tom Hadley says:

“Improving the mood of employers rests in the hands of the government. The announcement that EU workers who arrive in the transitional period can stay is a positive step, but businesses need to know what access they’ll have to EU workers after that time period so they can plan ahead.”

“Improving the mood of employers rests in the hands of the government. The announcement that EU workers who arrive in the transition period can stay is a positive step, but businesses need to know what access they’ll have to EU workers after that time period so they can plan ahead effectively.”

Friday 9 March 2018

Staff appointments continue to rise strongly in February

The HIS Market/REC Report on Jobs just published announces;

  • Softer rise in permanent placements as temp billings growth accelerates
  • Starting salary inflation holds close to 31-month high amid candidate shortages
  • Growth in staff vacancies edges down to 14-month low
  • Candidate supply drops at a lower rate
  • Pay growth continues to increase
  • The Midlands saw the quickest increase in permanent staff placements and temporary billings growth
  • Private sector demand higher than public sector
  • For short term roles – demand strongest in Nursing / Medical / Care sector
  • Kevin Green, REC Chief Executive says:

    “Even with employer uncertainty, demand for staff continues to rise. At the same time candidate availability is still dropping, which means that employers in all sectors are struggling to recruit for the roles they desperately need to fill. Government has a critical role to play. Post-Brexit, we will continue to need people from the EU to work in UK institutions like the NHS, and this needs to be as easy as possible without unnecessary cost or bureaucracy. We also need to develop skills across all sectors of the economy and the best way to do this is by broadening the apprenticeship levy into a wider training levy.”

    Monday, 22 January 2018

    REC endorses CBI’s call for Brexit urgency

    CBI director-general Carolyn Fairbairn has today given a speech on what will make a good Brexit. “A jobs-first transition deal to be nailed down in the next 70 days” was called for, and this was endorsed by Kevin Green of REC. He says that businesses need clarity and they have been waiting too long which is affecting hiring plans.

    He said that “ Recruiters tell us that their clients are already moving jobs abroad and this will increase if they don’t feel reassured. Large businesses do workforce planning at least a year ahead and it’s not feasible to think they will hold off on decision-making any longer.”

    “It’s also vital that EU workers in the UK are told what practical actions they have to take to get their right to work here confirmed. It is not clear right now and they will be feeling frustrated. Many sectors across the economy, from healthcare to warehousing, rely heavily on EU workers and must be able to access the people they need – otherwise employers could end up moving to other countries, reducing their services or even shutting down.”

    Tuesday 19 December 2017

    Demand for cyber security staff to surge next year – REC

    Demand for cyber security staff will increase over the next year, according to all recruitment agencies surveyed by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC). The majority (81 per cent) think demand will increase “significantly”.

  • 81% of recruitment businesses surveyed think demand will increase “significantly” over the coming year.
  • 94% of recruiters predict pay increases for cyber security staff over the next 12 months.
  • High profile cyber security attacks this year have concentrated the mind amongst employers as to their vulnerability and this is seen as a long term issue. Access to overseas candidates needs to remain and cross training opportunities and career guidance need to be urgently reviewed.

    Wednesday, 20 September 2017

    Confidence in economy drops again but employers are “showing resilience” – REC

    Employer confidence in the UK economy has dropped to the lowest level since the EU referendum, according to the latest JobsOutlook survey of 600 employers by REC.

    Thirty-three per cent of employers believe that economic conditions are getting worse, while 26 per cent think economic conditions are improving. The net balance fell further into negative territory, from -3 last month to -7 in September.

    Despite falling confidence in the economy as a whole, confidence in hiring and investment plans remains positive and REC chief executive Kevin Green says that “Employers are showing a great deal of resilience as they continue to hire despite a growing number losing faith in the direction the economy is heading and the political climate isn’t helping the situation. Employers are worried about how they will fill vacancies in the future. There are now just 1.9 unemployed people for every vacancy, and net migration from the EU is falling, which means the pool of people available to employers is shrinking.”

    Friday, 09 June 2017

    New government must prioritise the UK jobs market – REC

    Responding to the results of the UK general election, REC chief executive Kevin Green says:

    “The nation has voted, however it remains unclear this morning who will be occupying Number 10 or forming our next government. Whoever takes the reigns must front up quickly to challenges including the imminent Brexit negotiations which will shape the jobs market over the next decade. The UK has labour, skill and talent shortages and the evidence points to the situation getting worse before it gets better. Recruiters are jobs market experts, and we will urge policy-makers to collaborate with the REC and our members to build the best jobs market in the world.”

    Ahead of the general election, the REC asked 201 employers what they thought should be the new government’s top priority for the labour market, and found:

  • a third (33 per cent) said the new government should develop a strategy to make sure businesses have people with the skills they need
  • one in five (20 per cent) said the new government should agree a post-Brexit immigration system that helps businesses find the people they need
  • 11 per cent said the government must ensure that regulations reflect modern working practices.
  • Thursday 25 May 2017

    Employers could turn to temps to plug skills gap – REC

    Falling numbers of candidates to fill permanent vacancies appears to have led to nine in ten UK employers (89 per cent) planning to increase or maintain their temporary workforce in the next three months, according to a survey by REC. This is a rise of nine percentage points compared to findings reported in March (80 per cent), suggesting that businesses may become increasingly reliant on temporary workers.

    UK unemployment has fallen to 4.6 per cent (the lowest level since 1975) this month’s JobsOutlook survey of 606 employers reveals.

    The increased use of temporary workers may have a financial burden for some businesses, with one in five (19 per cent) claiming that agency workers earn more than permanent staff in equivalent roles. This gives opportunity for temps to earn more money in the face of rising prices and largely stagnant permanent wage growth as employers are forced to pay a premium for people to fill vacancies.

    16 December 2016

    Christmas Wishes from Reflex

    At this time of the year up and down the Country, Companies and Public Bodies are announcing their New Year’s resolutions and predictions for 2017. This year again at Reflex we are not but, would like to wish all our clients, consultants and candidates a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and hope it will be a dry and prosperous one!!

    14 December 2016

    Recruitment Industry worth more to UK economy than ever before

    The value of the recruitment industry to the UK economy is £35.1 billion per year, according to the ninth annual report on the recruitment industry’s performance from the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC). Key statistics from the REC’s Recruitment Industry Trends 2015/16 include:

    The report also found that the majority of temporary and contract assignments last longer than 12 weeks. The average length of assignment is more than 12 weeks for 73 per cent of contract workers and 61 per cent for temporary agency workers. This suggests that the majority of temporary workers benefit from equal treatment with permanent employees under the Agency Workers Directive.

    08 November 2016

    Permanent placements and temporary billings both see stronger growth

    The Markit/REC Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies.

    The amount of people placed in permanent roles increased for the third month running in October. Moreover, the rate of expansion quickened to the steepest recorded in eight months. Temporary/contract staff placements also rose at a faster pace at the start of the fourth quarter, with the rate of growth accelerating to a five-month high. The robust increase in staff appointments was supported by increased employee vacancies in the latest survey period. Furthermore, demand for both permanent and temporary staff was at the highest since May.

    Permanent staff starting salaries rose further in October, with the rate of increase picking up to its strongest for five months. Growth in hourly pay rates for temporary/contract staff meanwhile quickened slightly from September’s 40-month low, but remained relatively modest overall. The availability of permanent candidates continued to decline in October, and at a steeper rate than in September. Meanwhile, the availability of temporary/contract staff fell at the softest rate in four months.

    The North saw the quickest increase in permanent placements at the start of the fourth quarter, followed by the Midlands. However, London and Scotland registered marginal declines. As was the case with permanent placements, the North saw the strongest increase in short-term staff billings in October. The only region monitored by the survey to see a fall in temporary billings was Scotland.

    Demand for private sector staff remained robust in October, with recruitment consultancies seeing sharp increases in vacancies for both permanent and temporary posts. In contrast, the number of available permanent and temporary roles in the public sector declined modestly in the latest survey period. Demand rose for all permanent staff categories during October, albeit to varying degrees. Engineering maintained its top spot in the table, followed by IT & Computing. Meanwhile, demand was weakest for permanent roles in Hotel & Catering.

    Blue Collar topped the table for temporary/contract staff demand in October. All other categories also saw an upturn in demand over the month, though Executive/Professional saw the slowest rate of growth.

    26 October 2016

    One in four businesses hiring despite reduced confidence

    Almost a quarter (23 per cent) of UK employers plan to take on more permanent staff in the next three months, with only three percent planning a reduction in their permanent workforce, according to the latest JobsOutlook survey by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC). Businesses are also seeking more temporary resource, with four in five (81 per cent) planning to maintain or increase their use of agency workers in the run up to Christmas. However, the survey of 600 employers reveals that large organisations (250+ employees) are less likely to take on new permanent staff in the short term when compared to smaller businesses.

    There also appears to be differences between businesses based in the South East and those based in the rest of the UK. In the South East (including London), 77 per cent of employers expect to increase or hold their existing temporary staff in the next three months. Meanwhile, 98 per cent of employers based in the North plan to increase or maintain their temporary workforce in the same period.

    Overall, economic confidence has fallen according to the latest survey. Just 25 per cent of employers surveyed in July - September think UK economic conditions are improving. This compares to 48 per cent that cited improving conditions before the EU referendum (survey period March - May).

    05 August 2016

    Permanent Placements Fall at Sharpest Rate in Over Seven Years

    The UK jobs market suffered a dramatic freefall in July, with permanent hiring dropping to levels not seen since the recession of 2009.
    Demand for staff remains strong with vacancies continuing to rise, but the sharp fall in placements suggests that businesses are highly cautious about committing to new hires. Economic turbulence following the vote to leave the EU is undoubtedly the root cause.
    The record-high employment rate and ongoing skill shortages have made it difficult for employers to find suitable candidates for the roles available in the past, and this remains the case. We're now seein the added problem of individuals deciding to stay put rather than chance jobs in the current environment.
    While there are worrying signs, it's important we don't jump to conclusions from one month's data. The truth is, we don't know what long-term consequences the referendum result will have on UK jobs; with the political situations becoming more stable and the Bank of England making sensible decisions, we may well see confidence return to the jobs market faster than anticipated.

    21 April 2016

    Happy Birthday Your Majesty

    All of the team here would like to wish The Queen a very Happy 90th Birthday!

    29 March 2016

    REC responds to Finance Bill and highlights liability risk for recruiters

    The Finance Bill, published on Thursday 24 March, legislates that temporary workers will no longer be able to claim travel and subsistence expenses if they are under the supervision, direction or control (SDC) of any person. However, those working through personal services companies (PSCs), and who fall outside IR35, will continue to be able to claim travel and subsistence relief.

    For more information, contact the REC Press Office on 0207 009 2157/2192 or pressoffice@rec.uk.com.

    03 March 2016

    EU Referendum

    The Board of Reflex Computer Recruitment have decided to take a neutral stance on the matter of the UK’s EU membership, as the Company recognise that there are strong and valid arguments on both sides so is keen that individuals make their own decisions. The Board feels that no matter whether the UK votes to stay in or leave the EU in the upcoming EU Referendum, there will be many implications for Clients, Candidates and Contractors alike. The Company is positive as to the outcome of the referendum and feel the Country will make right decision.

    01 January 2016

    NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

    At this time of the year up and down the country Companies and Public Bodies are announcing their New Year’s resolutions and predictions for 2016. This year at Reflex we are not but, would like to wish all our clients, consultants and candidates a very Happy New Year and hope it will be a dry and prosperous one !!!!

    07 December 2015

    PERMANENT PLACEMENTS RISE AT FASTEST PACE IN SEVEN MONTHS

    The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies including Reflex Computer Recruitment. It announced faster growth of staff appointments and also said permanent staff placements increased at a stronger rate in November, with the rate of expansion quickening to a seven-month high. Temporary/contract staff billings also rose at a faster pace, with growth the sharpest in five months. Vacancy growth eases but is still in strong demand as staff continued to rise in November. Although easing to a 29-month low, the rate of expansion remained marked overall.

    29 July 2015

    To attract the best people, make recruitment a career of choice – REC

    Just over half (51 per cent) of recruitment consultants and managers are satisfied with their pay and reward, while 24 per cent are neither satisfied nor dissatisfied and 24 per cent are dissatisfied, according to new research published today by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) in partnership with Indeed.

    25 February 2015

    Ninety-two per cent of employers say temporary workers earn more or the same as permanent counterparts – REC

    A third of employers (36 per cent) say that temporary workers earn more than they would on a permanent contract at their company, and fifty-six per cent say temporary workers earn the same. Only two per cent say that temp workers earn less, according to the latest JobsOutlook survey by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

    This month’s report includes for the first time a comparison of agency pay rates to permanent salaries. The data shows an upward trend, with the proportion of employers stating that temporary staff earn more than their permanent colleagues increasing from 19 per cent in March 2014 to 36 per cent in January 2015.

    Three quarters of employers (75 per cent) said that the primary reason for taking on agency workers is to gain ‘short-term access to key strategic skills’.

    06 June 2014

    AVAILABILITY OF PERMANENT CANDIDATES FALLS AT SHARPEST RATE SINCE NOVEMBER 1997

    Following last month's JobsOutlook from the REC, The Recruitment and Employment Confederation and KPMG Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment consultancies including Reflex Computer Recruitment. It announced the steepest drop in permanent staff availability for 16½ years and the availability of candidates to fill permanent roles fell further in May. Moreover, the rate of deterioration accelerated to the sharpest since November 1997. Temporary/contract staff availability was also down markedly, with the latest drop only slightly slower than April’s 13-year record.

    The report also mentioned that staff placements continue to increase at marked pace and permanent placements growth remained marked in May, despite moderating slightly since the previous month. Temporary/contract staff billings also rose strongly, with the rate of expansion quickening from April’s ten-month low. This was supported by strongly rising vacancies and overall demand for staff continued to increase at a marked rate in May, although the pace of growth eased to a five-month low. Permanent vacancies again rose slightly faster than temporary/contract roles.

    21 May 2014

    INTENTION TO HIRE PERMANENT STAFF AT A RECORD HIGH

    The latest JobsOutlook from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) reports eight out of ten employers are planning to hire more people in the next three months, The monthly tracking survey reveals that the proportion of employers saying they need new staff to meet increased demand has risen from a quarter at the turn of the year to over a third. In addition to the positive hiring intentions, employers also voiced their concerns over skills shortages in the jobs market with one in five (20%) predicting a problem finding people to fill technical and engineering roles in the next three months, and one in four (25%) predicting significant shortages in the next 12 months.

    REC CEO Kevin Green said: “The economic recovery is having a real impact on the jobs market as these are the best results we have seen since this survey began in 2009. The labour market is becoming more candidate led and it is vital that businesses look at their hiring processes to ensure that they are fit for purpose and will attract the candidates they are looking to hire."

    02 January 2014

    NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

    At this time of the year up and down the country Companies and Public Bodies are announcing their New Year’s resolutions and predictions for 2014. This year at Reflex we are not but, would like to wish all our clients, consultants and candidates a very Happy New Year and hope it will be a dry and prosperous one !!!!

    09 December 2013

    VACANCIES INCREASE AT FASTEST PACE SINCE JULY 1998

    The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs – published today – provides the most comprehensive guide to the UK labour market, drawing on original survey data provided by recruitment Industry. The report high light permanent and temporary appointments rise at strong, albeit slower rates and overall vacancies increase at fastest pace since July 1998. The REC CEO Kevin Green reported that: “We enter the New Year with job vacancies increasing at the fastest pace in 15 years. The fact that our figures show starting salary growth hitting a six year high, combined with continued skill and talent shortages, indicates that we can expect salaries to increase and job fluidity to accelerate into 2014”. “Report on Jobs show that all sectors, all regions and both the private and public sector are in growth, which is fantastic news for British businesses, the UK economy and people looking for work in 2014.” Reflex reports that this is also being reflected in the growth in demand for IT staff and a rise in staff shortages in a few key technology areas, resulting in salary inflation.

    24 October 2013

    NEW OFFICES

    We are pleased to announce that Reflex Computer Recruitment will be moving to new and larger office premises. Our new office address from Monday 28th October 2013 will be: Furness House, 53 Brighton Road, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 6RD. Our telephone number remains 01737 778282.

    This investment will allow us to meet the needs of both our candidates and clients alike and is part of a planned expansion programme. The new building features improved meeting and video conference facilities and a well-organised ‘open office’ layout designed to encourage team building. The new offices will allow the company to expand its operation as it expects growth to continue over the next few years making the move a very important part of our strategic plan at this stage of our development.

    29 July 2013

    PROGRESS BEING MADE ON SECURITY VETTING REQUIREMENTS FOR IT RECRUITERS

    Security clearance has always been a prickly issue for recruiters in the technology sector. The incessant demand for pre-cleared contractors to fill positions in government departments has prevented recruiters from accessing a wide pool of possible candidates. Conversely, this has created additional constraints for micro-businesses wishing to successfully compete for government contracts. In previous years, progress has been relatively slow with only nuanced changes in the position on on-going areas of concern for recruiters and contractors. However, with government’s commitment to supporting SME growth particularly in procurement, can we expect a culture change? Perhaps with Lord Young directly referencing the potential economic impact in his recent report on growing micro businesses which has been taken up by the REC will help. The REC continue to work closely with PCG and the Cabinet Office as part of the Security Clearance Forum to promote effective management of procedures and reduce the over-reliance on pre-cleared statuses. The aim is to create a step-change in employment and productivity outcomes for employers and contractors, making the process simple, transparent and cost effective. Let us hope we see the require change over the coming months.

    22 May 2013

    GROWTH IN NUMBER OF EMPLOYERS PLANNING TO TAKE ON MORE STAFF

    The latest JobsOutlook from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) reports a rise in the number of employers saying they plan to take on more staff. The monthly tracking survey shows this month’s largest increase is among bosses saying they intend to take on more permanent workers within the next quarter, which is up four percent on last month. Kevin Green of the REC said: “Our data predicts jobs growth will return. While the current economic situation is still challenging for many businesses there are also some positive signs. Although the recovery has been gradual, the UK has avoided the very high levels of unemployment seen elsewhere on the continent and employer confidence does seem to be on the rise.” Reflex believes that this is great news for the Economy and hopes to see further signs of recovery later this year.

    25 April 2013

    STORMING THROUGH THE MONTH OF MARCH

    The Anglo-Saxons referred to the month of March as “Hlyd monath” which means Stormy month. However for Reflex Computer Recruitment it should be referred to as a storming month! This is because last month, March 2013 was the busiest for 12 months in terms of placing more Permanent and Contract IT Professionals. In fact looking back in our records for the last 3 years, in each and every case, the month of March has been the most productive for new IT placements. It could be the case that organisations gearing up to the start of the financial year turn to IT to give them a head start and Reflex is happy to oblige.

    05 April 2013

    HMRC UPDATES ITS IR35 ADVICE

    HMRC has today published further information on IR35 in the form of a set of FAQs. This can be downloaded from HMRC’s website: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/ir35/faq_qanda/director_q3.htm

    Reflex Computer Recruitment understand that the IR35 Forum convened by HMRC have already requested clarification on these FAQs. In particular around how the definition of ‘office holder’ will be applied. HMRC have indicated that this new guidance applies from 6 April 2013, but cannot be considered final until the Finance Bill 2013 receives Royal Assent (planned for summer 2013).

    15 March 2013

    GOVERNMENT RECOGNISES THERE IS A TRAVEL AND SUBSISTANCE PROBLEM

    We understand that The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) met with Treasury Minister David Gauke on Wednesday to discuss the use of travel and subsistence schemes in the recruitment sector and the need for more effective and visible enforcement measures. As a result of this meeting The REC’s director of policy and professional services Tom Hadley says:

    "It was really good to see that the government now recognises the importance of this issue. Agencies who abide by the law are being disadvantaged by market distortion created by organisations who don’t play by the rules. More robust government action to ensure a level playing field is not just an issue for recruiters but also for legitimate umbrella organisations. "The Treasury are now considering a number of practical solutions that could make a real difference. "Bad practice by some tarnishes the reputation of our whole industry. That’s why we are committed to working with the government to provide real clarity to recruiters and shine a light on dubious models. We will continue to work closely with HMRC officials to ensure that we see real progress, in particular through a fresh, public enforcement drive on minimum wage regulations."

    Reflex Computer Recruitment is committed to good governance and hope that the government take on board and act on the issues and concerns raised.

    30 January 2013

    EMPLOYERS PREDICT JOBS GROWTH FOR 2013

    A new survey from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) shows that more than half of employers are planning to hire more permanent staff in 2013. According to the latest monthly “JobsOutlook”, a survey of 600 employers, the UK’s jobs market is set to continue on a trend of slow growth during 2013 with more than 50 per cent of employers looking to increase their permanent workforce and one in three planning to take on more temps. This indicates a very positive start to the year and long may it continue!

    01 January 2013

    NEW YEAR MESSAGE

    Charles Darwin has been quoted saying “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change. In the struggle for survival, the fittest win out at the expense of their rivals because they succeed in adapting themselves best to their environment.” Reflex is confident that 2013 will be a good year and will rise as well as to adapt to the challenges ahead. In doing so we wish everyone a prosperous new year!

    14 November 2012

    JOBS FIGURES HIGHLIGHT CONTRAST BETWEEN UK AND REST OF EUROPE

    Commenting on the latest employment figures released by the Office for National Statistics today, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC)’s chief executive Kevin Green says:

    “Today’s figures are really good news. On a day where there are strikes across Europe because of rising unemployment, jobs figures in the UK are getting better and better. This continues the positive trend we’ve seen throughout the year and shows that employers are confident about the future by taking on more staff. We expect to see on-going growth in flexible working. There are opportunities across a whole range of jobs and sectors for interims and contractors, not just the low-paid or low-skilled ones that are often associated with temping. Employers often recruit temporary staff into permanent roles. Our data shows that in about 25 per cent of cases employers end up taking on temps as permanent employees. Most temps work that way out of choice, but even for those people who ultimately want a full-time permanent role, a temp or part-time job is a fantastic stepping stone to that. However, it is important that the government does not get complacent. Flexible working options are a core strength of our labour market and must not be stifled by over-regulation. There is still a lot of work to be done to help the long-term unemployed get back into work and to improve the process of getting youngsters into their first jobs.”

    08 November 2012

    PERMANENT PLACEMENTS RISE AT THE FASTEST RATE FOR 17 MONTHS

    The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs published today, announces that permanent placements across all sectors has risen at the fastest rate for 17 months and that the growth of contact billings accelerated to an 18 month high. Focusing on the IT sector, Reflex are pleased to report that this is reflected in the conditions we are seeing in the 4th Quarter 2012. The signs are that the growth for contract and permanent IT staff is expected to be maintained into the start of 2013 which is good news for the UK economy.

    19 October 2012

    GETTING POLITICIANS TO RECOGNISE RECRUITMENT'S CONTRIBUTION

    The UK recruitment industry has survived the recession and continues to play a critical role in helping businesses and organisations find the talent, skills and resource they need to grow. The sector has contributed to making our labour market the envy of many countries; creating jobs and keeping unemployment much lower than forecast. This is in spite of the additional regulatory hurdles placed before us by government when last year alone recruiters had to deal with the introduction of AWR, pensions auto-enrolment and a tax regime that many feel does not work. One of the little trumpeted facts is that the private sector has created over a million new jobs in the last year. With further public sector staff losses to come, many are calling on politicians to holding back on further regulation and recognise that the recruitment industry is a significant contributor to economic growth and job creation and allow it play its part unhindered.

    18 September 2012

    YET MORE GOVERNEMENT LEGISLATION

    It has widely been reported that a high priority for high-end recruiters and interim management providers over the last few months, has been to push back on proposals in the government's 'controlling persons' consultation that would threaten the use of contractors. Although any proposed legislation will not come into force until next year, Danny Alexander’s review published in May this year, made clear that in the meantime all government departments using off pay roll contractors, would have to adopt a new assurance process to ensure that they are able to satisfy themselves that ‘off payroll engages are meeting their income tax and NICs obligations.’ Reflex agrees with The REC and the Interim Management Association (IMA) who have argued against any knee-jerk regulatory response and underlined the crucial benefit to employers of being able to quickly deploy highly skilled executives on short-term contracts.

    18 August 2012

    THE “ECONOMIC PUZZLE”

    Yesterday’s good news that Unemployment in Britain fell to its lowest level in nearly a year during the second quarter of 2012, has been described as a “genuine economic puzzle”. This is because, although the UK economy has created nearly half a million new jobs since 2010, economic output is actually slightly lower than 2 years ago!. You would expect additional jobs would create greater economic output or GDP. Some economists have put the increase in the workforce down to temporary jobs created for the Olympics but most commentators feel the numbers are too large to be accounted for solely by the Olympics. Perhaps the answer is that Britain’s economy is actually doing better than the national economic output statistics show or that GDP has been mismeasured. Let’s hope so!

    25 July 2012

    REFLEX SIGN UP TO DAVIS CODE OF CONDUCT

    Reflex Computer Recruitment are pleased to announce that they have joined the growing number of Executive Search Firms to sign up the voluntary Code of Conduct. This was drawn up following The Davies Review addressing gender diversity and best practice across the relevant search criteria and processes relating to board level appointments.

    This code lays out steps that Reflex will follow across the search process, from accepting a board level brief through to final induction. It covers areas including; Succession Planning, Diversity Goals, Defining Briefs, Shortlisting, Supporting Selection, Emphasising Intrinsics and Induction.

    Reflex believes this Code of Conduct reflects their commitment to helping clients to improve board effectiveness, and builds on and aims to share best practice across the industry. It also acknowledges the important role Executive Search Firms play in supporting their clients as they take steps to increase the proportion of women on their boards. Click Here or the full text of the Voluntary Code of Conduct.

    28 May 2012

    REFLEX IS COOKIE FREE !

    The New EU cookie law, known as the e-Privacy Directive, came into force on Saturday 26th May 2012. The New EU law regulates the confidentiality of data and the storing of information on a user’s equipment (such as computer or mobile device) in the form of cookies and other similar technologies. There has been much written about the new EU law. We understand that, currently, there are still a number of Industry and Government websites who do not comply with the new EU regulations. The good news is that Reflex Computer Recruitment do not use or have cookies on any of our websites. Reflex decided early on not to adopt Cookies as part of Client and Candidate privacy policy, and has no plans to change this.

    11 May 2012

    HMRC'S NEW APPROACH TO IR35 EKES OUT

    HMRC's eagerly anticipated “new approach” to the IR35 regulations has finally been announced. IR35 was originally introduced by the previous Government to tackle “disguised employment”, where Limited Companies are falsely used to engage people who are actually employees. Thus resulting in tax and National Insurance (NIC) avoidance schemes. The 2 year review, ordered in 2010 by the Collation Government, has failed to deliver the changes that people both hoped for and awaited. It appears that most will be unhappy with the result, as the Government has decided that the IR35 regulations are not to change. It has been decided that abolition would put potential revenue at risk, and instead committed to making IR35 less of an ordeal for those businesses unfortunate enough to get caught up in its myriad of complexity.

    The Government have announced a one year trial of a set of business tests, using HMRC’s new Employment Status Indicator (ESI) tool. This tool is designed to provide businesses and HMRC with a means of assessing risk and potential risk. The plan is that businesses which score highly will have proved that they are genuine businesses, and HMRC will not pursue the investigation. Businesses which are unable to score well on the tests may be subjected to an investigation, pending further information. The catch? The tests will not be used to determine IR35 status, rather they are purely a risk assessment tool. If you take the test you will be under no obligation to report the results to HMRC. In fact, you need not take the tests at all if you don’t want to. The test can be accessed at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/calcs/esi.htm and they are setting up a new, dedicated IR35 helpline, staffed by experts, to respond exclusively to IR35 queries. This will be confidential, but will also offer an audit trail so that more complex queries can be followed up.

    That said, one piece of good news has appeared from the Government’s review. HMRC will now consider the business as a whole entity, rather than looking only at individual contracts. Essentially, this lays the foundation for the ESI “business tests”, which allow HMRC to use common sense indicators of being “in business” rather than looking to the complexities of contracts and case law. This should result in fewer wasted enquiries and investigations. Although HMRC have added that the contract ultimately will still be considered in some cases.

    10 May 2012

    SURVEY SHOW PERMEANENT PLACEMENTS RISE FOR FOURTH MONTH IN A ROW

    The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) and KPMG Report on Jobs published today, provides further encouragement that the employment market is moving. It reported that Permanent staff placements increased in April, continuing the trend seen since the start of 2012. That said, the rate of growth was modest and the slowest since January. The report was tempered by the Temporary / Contract billings showing a slight fall.

    The findings highlight the fragile nature of the UK jobs market at present. Employer and consumer confidence are increasing, and we anticipate more commercial organisations taking on Permanent staff later this year. Some will be filling roles currently undertaken by contractors, and others being newly created roles.

    This is, on the whole, welcome news for the UK economy. It will be interesting to see if this trend continues and what affect both the Olympics and the Euro crisis will have on the monthly reports later this year.

    16 February 2011

    DEMAND FOR IT STAFF REMAINS STRONG

    Reflex reports that the demand for the 1st quarter 2011 for IT professionals (both Contract and Permanent) in the UK sector remains strong, despite mixed economic news. Commenting after the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to keep interest rates on hold for another month regardless of rising inflation, Reflex foresee a constant demand for IT staff for the first half of 2011 as those sectors not affected by the Government budget cuts are taking on new staff to drive their businesses forward.

    There are some clouds on the horizon with the strong possibility of interest rate increases and redundancies following both national and local Government budget cuts. These cutbacks may partly explain why UK unemployment rose 44,000 to almost 2.5 million in the three months to the end of December 2010 which was reported today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

    Reflex feel as interest rates remain low, and with UK business in good shape, many organisations will continue to invest in new technology in order to expand and innovate for the future. This increase in demand for staff is supported by the February 2011 "Report on Jobs" published by KPMG / REC whose headline was "Permanent placements rose at faster rate for the six months in January".

    23 March 2012

    25th ANNIVERSARY OF PUG UK & IRELAND

    It is the 25th Anniversary of PUG UK & Ireland!! During this time the PUG has been a welcome force and an ideal networking environment for the Progress community, and long may this continue. Reflex, a long established member, also welcomes the 2012 PUG UK & Ireland Spring Conference to be held in Solihull on Tuesday 24th and Wednesday 25th April 2012. The conference will involve workshops and an informal networking event sponsored by Progress Software. It is free to fully paid up members of the PUG UK & Ireland as well as being open to non-members. Further information can be obtained from the PUG office on 01202 620700.

    08 March 2012

    DO PROOF YOUR CV BEFORE SENDING IT OFF

    It has been reported in the press that candidates may be missing out on securing jobs because of a badly worded or presented CV. Here at Reflex Computer Recruitment, we have noticed a drop in the quality of CV's over the years, especially regarding spelling and grammar. Working within the IT field, it is also important to have good numeracy skills. We have also seen a trend for some junior candidates to use more 'text speak' and some candidates are becoming lax about presenting a professional profile. In general, our clients are more likely to be interested in those who have presented their CV well, with correct spelling, grammar etc. They want us to pass on the candidate's own / original CV, so that the candidate is represented using their own wording. Although we are happy to advise candidates and have some general guidelines on our website, it is the responsibility of the candidate to get their CV right. We recommend that candidates ask a couple of people who work in a similar field, to proof read it before submission as simple mistakes can let them down and prevent their CV being shortlisted. Quality should not be rushed and time spent proofing a CV will pay dividends. We feel in the IT field it is not that there is a lack of basic numeracy, spelling and grammar skills but that some candidates do not recognise the importance of proof reading their CV before sending it off. We believe that these problems are being highlighted by the recruitment agencies first and so urge candidates to take the care to proof their CV before sending it off.

    08 February 2012

    EARLY SIGNS OF SPRING?

    ' New hope springs for the UK employment market, as permanent placements rise for the first time in over four months.' The start of 2012 welcomed an increase, albeit modest, in the number of permanent placements made during the month of January. Results from the 'Report on Jobs', collected by Markit, KPMG and the REC, also show that the IT sector remains one of the strongest industry sectors for candidates. Regrettably, the number of candidates hoping to fill that increased number of vacancies has also risen, and continues to do so. The number of contract placements overall fell slightly, with agencies commenting that they felt it was due to the knock on effect of the Agency Workers Regulations. On a positive note, there was a slight increase in contractor demand within the IT sector from the previous month, so with the permanent placements starting to blossom, could this signal early signs of spring?

    27 January 2012

    PHASE 1 COMPLETE – LAUNCH OF NEW REFLEX WEBSITE

    Today is an auspicious day for Reflex Computer Recruitment, as we launch Phase 1 of our new website. We have aimed to make the site more user friendly, together with providing more useful information for both clients and candidates alike. While our website may look different, rest assured that you will still receive the same personal and professional style for all of our recruitment services. There is still work to do on the site however, with Phase 2 hailing our launch into the Social Media side. Reflex is branching out into various social media stratospheres in order to increase our profile, and thus our effectiveness for your business. We have already received some positive feedback about our new site, and hope that Phase 2 will also be received with equal enthusiasm.

    06 January 2012

    THE IMPORTANCE OF IT

    'IT Matters Again' is the fitting title of a report published at the end of December by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL) . The report sums up our own findings when it states that "whether it is to promote growth, be closer to customers or to control costs, IT has a key role to play. There is a renewed focus on using business transformation projects – underpinned by IT – to outperform the competition through more efficient innovative new business models. Simply put, there are aspects of technology today that matter more than ever before." The report goes on to mention that Boards and Leadership teams are challenged to secure and advance their businesses. We wonder if this message should be also be passed to the public sector, to see if ways can be made to improve IT within the public sector for the benefit of us all. We agree with the sentiment that the IT Department should champion and exploit information, and not just focus on technology.

    14 November 2011

    EURO UNEMPLOYMENT SET TO RISE BUT DEMAND IN THE UK STILL RISING

    The November edition of the ECB (European Central Bank) monthly report indicates that the improvements in labour market conditions that took place in the first half of the year appear to have come to a halt. This is in contrast to developments earlier in the recovery, when hours worked grew more quickly than headcount employment. The report went on to say that expectations for the euro area is for the unemployment rate to increase for the rest of 2011 and 2012. The upward revision in unemployment expectations is mainly due to the current slowdown in economic activity and the cost-cutting that is currently taking place. The highlighted main upside risk to this outlook is a sudden worsening of the on-going crisis that would lead to a further deterioration of economic activity. Downside risks quoted are mostly associated with the success of on-going labour market reforms, which would lead to higher labour market flexibility. Recent news in the UK is more positive, in that although Permanent placements in the UK fell last month for the first time in over two months the actual demand for permanent IT staff was growing and by the strongest rate across a basket of 8 business sectors. This was reported in the November monthly Report of Jobs published by Markit and sponsored by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and KPMG LLP.

    30 September 2011

    REFLEX READY FOR AWR

    Reflex is all prepared for AWR (Agency Workers Regulations) which come into force this Saturday, 1st October. A lot of misinformation has been bounded about by commentators ranging from there will be no change through to Armageddon. However Reflex it is right to point out that for a Government who came to power pledging less red tape for business this is somewhat an own goal! From the 1st October all contract agency after 12 weeks of employment will be entitled to the same pay and benefits as permanent staff undertaking the same role. Reflex has been working to ensure that it is fully up and running to embrace AWR and in particular we have worked to ensure that engaging contract staff will be no more expensive nor involve further bureaucracy. Reflex's staff have been trained to pre-empt many of the problems that may arise and have various information leaflets for candidates and clients. We have also been in touch with our clients and contractors to ensure a smooth operation moving forward the introduction of AWR.

    25 May 2011

    MIXED NEWS ON THE JOB FRONT

    The Report of Jobs, the monthly report published by Markit and sponsored by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and KPMG LLP announced that during last month that permanent placements rose at faster pace in April, but growth of temp and contractors eased. It recorded that across all business sectors surveyed the strongest demand was for IT & computer staff. Correspondingly it reported the growth in the use of contractors was easing as a whole, but again the strongest group surveyed was for those in the IT & Computer Business sector.

    01 April 2011

    TIER 1 VISA ABOLISHED FOR NEW APPLICANTS

    From today the UK Border Agency have confirmed that the Tier 1 General visa category (which in turn replaced the HSMP visa) has been abolished. This will apply to new first-time applicants both in the UK and those applying from overseas. However this will NOT affect those who have already secured a Tier 1 General visa and wish to apply for an extension in the UK as this will still be possible. The Government has retained the Tier 2 points scheme for those workers who have a Certificate of Sponsorship from an organisation that is a licensed sponsor in the United Kingdom. The change in regulations will impact on the supply of IT Contractors as many Highly Skilled Migrants use the Tier 1 scheme to work in the UK. However a number of business commentators feel that in the short term the IT sector will not be detrimentally affected. This is because most permanent roles have in the past have not been filled by candidates holding Tier 1 visas and because there is a large pool of IT professionals currently seeking new contracts.

    16 February 2011

    DEMAND FOR IT STAFF REMAINS STRONG

    Reflex reports that the demand for the 1st quarter 2011 for IT professionals (both Contract and Permanent) in the UK sector remains strong, despite mixed economic news. Commenting after the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to keep interest rates on hold for another month regardless of rising inflation, Reflex foresee a constant demand for IT staff for the first half of 2011 as those sectors not affected by the Government budget cuts are taking on new staff to drive their businesses forward.

    There are some clouds on the horizon with the strong possibility of interest rate increases and redundancies following both national and local Government budget cuts. These cutbacks may partly explain why UK unemployment rose 44,000 to almost 2.5 million in the three months to the end of December 2010 which was reported today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

    Reflex feel as interest rates remain low, and with UK business in good shape, many organisations will continue to invest in new technology in order to expand and innovate for the future. This increase in demand for staff is supported by the February 2011 "Report on Jobs" published by KPMG / REC whose headline was "Permanent placements rose at faster rate for the six months in January".

    13 January 2011

    REFLEX WILL CONTINUE TO ENFORCE HIGHER STANDARDS DESPITE CHANGES TO STATUTORY REQUIREMENTS

    Last October saw amendments to the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations. The changes resulted in agencies that place permanent candidates being relieved of some of their statutory obligations in terms of obtaining a client's and candidate’s agreement to terms.

    However, Reflex has confirmed that it will continue to ensure that agencies do obtain agreement as part of the good practice enshrined in the REC industry Code of Professional Practice.

    Reflex, like all REC members, are signed up to the Code which includes specific provisions on transparency and clear communication. The decision to continue driving best practice in this area despite the legislative change was confirmed by the REC’s Professional Standards Committee, which is made up from recruitment industry peers as well as representatives from the CBI and TUC.

    01 June 2010

    REC TECHNOLOGY NOW DOMINANT VOICE IN IT & COMMS

    The REC Technology sector group is now the dominant force in IT & Telecoms recruitment with over 400 recruitment firms in membership. Reflex understands that following a successful renewals period, REC Technology saw its membership grow from 160 to 406 members, a testament to a successful 2009 which saw the group deliver for its members during the downturn. It is also the only group dedicated to representing IT & Comms recruiters in the UK.

    26 January 2010

    END OF RECESSION WILL BOOST JOBS MARKET

    Figures released today show that the UK economy has come out of recession with a reported growth of 0.1 per cent in the last quarter of 2009. This slight recovery could further boost employer confidence and accelerate the already increasing demand for both permanent and temporary staff, according to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

    The latest REC 'JobsOutlook' showed that employer confidence was already starting to rise with one in five businesses planning to increase their permanent workforce over the coming year and a huge majority (over 90 per cent) not intending to carry out any more job cuts. This followed the latest REC/KPMG Report on Jobs which showed permanent staff placements growing at their fastest rate for 18 months and temporary staff assignments rising at their sharpest rate for 30 months.