LinkedIn Workforce Report | United Kingdom | February 2019
Over 26 million people in the UK have LinkedIn profiles. We anonymise and aggregate the information from these profiles to create unique insights into workforce trends.
The LinkedIn Workforce Report is a monthly report looking at hiring and professional migration trends in the UK, and this month’s report looks at the latest data from December 2018. This is our fifteenth Workforce Report for the UK, and it takes a comparative look at both data from December 2018 and data from the previous 12 months to benchmark our findings and identify trends.
We time the workforce report in order to support the Office for National Statistics (ONS) labour reporting cycle, and the report we issue ahead of the ONS’s Labour Market Review covers the same period, up to the end of December 2018.
LinkedIn’s vision is to create economic opportunity for every worker in the global workforce. We hope that the Workforce Report will be useful to our members, allowing you to better navigate your career, and to businesses and policy makers, who will be able use our insights to better inform their decisions on talent, migration, and employment.
Our key findings on hiring activity in December:
Hiring was down nationally. In December the Seasonally Adjusted (S.A.) Month on Month (MoM) Hiring Rate declined by 4.4% on the previous month, maintaining a downward trend visible since a peak in September and October.
Hiring continues to be stronger than it was a year ago. Year on Year (YoY) hiring rates rose by 17% nationally compared with December 2017, above the rate for the previous month and consistent with yearly increases seen throughout much of 2018.
Hiring was down in most of the UK’s regions. In December, the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate declined in eight of the 12 UK nations and regions that returned significant data. London was the only region to record an increase in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate, and the South West and North East recorded the largest MoM declines of -9% and -7%, respectively.
Every region saw increased hiring compared to the same month last year. The North West, North East and East Midlands registered the best YoY growth in hiring (all up 15%) on December 2017, and London and the East of England were also strong at +12%. It is the third month in a row in which hiring in the capital has grown in YoY terms.
Hiring fell in most sectors of the labour market. 16 of the 24 labour market sectors returned significant data in December and all but three of these registered a decline in the S.A MoM Hiring Rate. This confirmed a reversal since October, when 13 sectors grew. Energy and Mining grew by more than any other sector, with an increase of 10% MoM.
More people continued to take up new jobs than in 2017. In every sector of the labour market, hiring grew in comparison to the same month the previous year. While movements in hiring in the Legal sector have been erratic, it registered a significant YoY performance with a 40% increase in hiring compared with December 2017. The Construction, Retail and Manufacturing sectors, however, are all performing at the lower end of the scale.
The Hiring Rate
Methodology – LinkedIn Hiring Rate
The LinkedIn Hiring Rate is the percentage of LinkedIn members who changed the name of their new employer in the same month that they started their new job. This number is indexed to the average monthly value for 2015–16. We also show this number adjusted to exclude the impact of seasonality on the Hiring Rate, such as the spike in hiring at the beginning of the year.
This analysis represents the world seen through the lens of LinkedIn data. As such, it is influenced by how members choose to use the site, which can vary based on professional, social, and regional culture, as well as overall site availability and accessibility. These variances were not accounted for in the analysis.
The S.A. MoM National Hiring Rate in December was down by 4.4% on November, continuing a negative trend, albeit with the monthly decline since October slowing.
YoY hiring nationally rose by a more positive 17% on December 2017, above the rate for the previous month and in line with the increases seen throughout this year, providing a further indication that more people were taking up new jobs than a year before.
Regional Hiring Rates
In December, the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate declined in eight of the 12 UK nations and regions, with an average fall of 3.6%, a significantly lower decline than in November. The South West and the North East recorded the largest MoM declines of 9% and 7%, respectively. London was the only region in which the hiring rate grew MoM (+1%) in December, reversing a 13% decline in November.
Every region of the country achieved YoY growth in hiring compared with December 2017, with the North West, North East and East Midlands registering the best performance (all up 15%). YoY hiring in London and the East of England was also strong at 12%, with the capital reversing a poor performance the previous month in which it had been at the bottom of the chart. It is the third month in a row in which hiring in London has grown in YoY terms.
Notable regional activity this month includes:
London – The capital was the only region of the country to record an increase in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in December, albeit of just 1%, after having fallen significantly in November (down 13%). YoY hiring, up by 12% versus December 2017, has improved in the capital after it had recorded the lowest growth of any region in November.
South East – Although the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate did not change in the South East in December (0%), this represents a significant improvement on the previous month when it fell by 16%. Growth in hiring YoY of 6% versus December 2017, however, was again the second lowest in the country and below the regional average of 11%.
South West – The South West recorded the poorest performance of any region that returned significant data, with the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate down by 9% in December, after having achieved the strongest hiring rate in the country in November. YoY hiring was up 11% versus December 2017, equalling the regional average.
The North East – Hiring remains sluggish in the North East, with a 7% decline in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in December, which comes after a 17% fall in November. However, the YoY Hiring Rate was up 15% versus December 2017, putting the North East at the top of the regional performance chart alongside the North West and East Midlands. The North East continues to do well on a yearly basis since having recorded the highest YoY growth rate of any UK region in October (16%) versus the same month in 2017.
The North West – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in December was a negative 4% in the North West, which was near to the regional average. However, YoY the Hiring Rate grew by 15% compared with December 2017 making this region a top performer alongside the North East and East Midlands.
The East Midlands – The East Midlands registered a similar performance to the North West in December, with the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate at 4%, near the regional average, and YoY hiring rising by 15% versus the same month in 2017.
Scotland – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate was down by 4% in December, in line with the national trend. However, in terms of YoY hiring, Scotland performed more poorly than any other region with only 4% growth versus December 2017. There has been a downward trend in YoY hiring in the region since October.
The East of England – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in the East of England was down by 3% in December, although this figure actually put its performance above the average when compared with other regions. Growth in the YoY Hiring Rate of 12% in the East of England versus December 2017 was also at the upper end of the scale.
Yorkshire and the Humber – While the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate fell by 2% in Yorkshire and the Humber in December, its performance was above the regional average. The region enjoyed continued YoY growth of 10% versus December 2017.
The West Midlands – The MoM Hiring Rate declined by 4% in the West Midlands in December, near to the regional average. The Hiring Rate was stronger YoY with growth of 8% versus December 2017, although this was below average and towards the lower end of the regional chart.
Sector Hiring Rates
A deep dive into the individual Hiring Rates of different sectors of the economy can give us a better understanding of the changes that have been taking place. All but three of the 16 labour market sectors that returned significant data in December registered a decline in the S.A MoM Hiring Rate confirming a reversal since October when 13 of the sectors grew. Overall, there was an average MoM decline of 5% across the sectors in December. By contrast, in every sector of the labour market hiring YoY grew in comparison to December 2017.
Energy and Mining – The Energy and Mining sector grew by more than any other sector in December with an increase of 10% in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate, putting it well above other areas of the labour market. The Hiring Rate YoY was 15% up on December 2017, nearly matching the average across the sectors (16%). Energy and Mining has overturned its sluggish performance in October when it was the only sector to register a YoY decline in the hiring rate.
Legal – The Legal sector continues to be erratic, with a performance in December better than most other areas of the labour market yet coming after a period of sluggish growth. The S.A MoM Hiring Rate in December was up by 4%, making it one of just two sectors alongside Energy and Mining to achieve growth this month. However, the stellar performance of the Legal sector YoY compared with December 2017 – up by 40% – indicates that hiring in this area has improved greatly on an annual basis.
Nonprofit – The Nonprofit sector has been volatile since October, and in December it performed above the average level of the 16 sectors that returned significant data, although with a fall in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate of 2%. As with other sectors, however, the yearly picture is much better and at 29%, the YoY Hiring Rate in December compared to the same month a year before is second only to the Legal sector.
Retail – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in the Retail sector was down by 17% in December, placing it at the bottom of the chart among the sectors that returned significant data. This was a significant reversal of its position in November, when it performed better than any other sector. At 7%, YoY growth in the Hiring Rate versus December 2017 also put the Retail sector at the lower end of the chart.
Media and Communications – Media and Comms sector was one of only three sectors that did not experience a decline in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in December, and although there was no growth in this sector (0%) its performance was nonetheless above the national average and at the upper end of the chart. YoY growth of 14% versus December 2017 was slightly below average.
Construction – The Construction sector experienced its third monthly decline in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in a row, with hiring down by 11% in December, over twice the average national fall. This sector was also near the bottom of the chart when it comes to the YoY Hiring Rate, which grew by only 7% versus December 2017, continuing a slowdown evident since August.
Software and IT Services – Although there was a decline in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate of 1% in Software and IT Services in December, this sector’s performance was above average and actually places it at the upper end of the chart. At 18%, growth in the YoY Hiring Rate versus December 2017 was also above the national average and indicates that this area of the labour market is attracting more new hires than a year ago.
Healthcare – While data for both the Healthcare and Public Administration sectors has reflected sluggish hiring in the public services in recent months, the 3% decline in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in the Healthcare sector in December reflects an above average performance. Moreover, above average YoY hiring growth of 20% compared with December 2017 indicates that this sector’s performance has improved on a year ago.
Entertainment – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in the Entertainment sector was down by 1% in December, although this was well above the labour market average, placing it towards the top of the chart. However, the yearly picture is less positive with growth of just 5% in the YoY Hiring Rate versus December 2017, the lowest of any sector.
Consumer Goods – While hiring in the Consumer Goods sector slowed towards the end of last year, its performance compared to the previous year is much better. The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in this sector fell in December by 10%, a performance that was below the national decline and towards the bottom of the chart. However, the hiring rate YoY was up 19% versus December 2017.
Finance – Financial hiring has improved since November when it fell by more than any labour market sector (down 22%), with the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in December down by a better than average 3%. Hiring has also picked up on an annual basis with the YoY Hiring Rate 13% up on December 2017, an improvement on the previous month when the Financial sector was towards the bottom of the chart.
Manufacturing – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in Manufacturing fell by 5% in December, but YoY growth of 11% versus the same month in 2017 was below average, albeit an improvement on the figure for November.
Corporate Services – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate was down by 5% in the Corporate Services sector in December, the third month in a row in which it has registered negative growth. However, 16% growth in the Hiring Rate YoY versus December 2017 matched the average among the labour market sectors.
Education – At a negative 8%, the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate in the Education sector fell for the third month in a row in December. However, in yearly terms, this sector is performing above average, with YoY growth of 17% compared to December 2017.
Recreation and Travel – The S.A. MoM Hiring Rate declined by 9% in the Recreation and Travel sector in December, putting it towards the lower end of the chart among labour market sectors that returned significant data. The YoY Hiring Rate grew by 11% versus December 2017, which was below the national average.
Public Administration – The above average fall in the S.A. MoM Hiring Rate of 8% in the Public Administration sector in December confirmed a sluggish performance since September. While the YoY picture is better, with the Hiring Rate up 12% versus December 2017, this performance was still below the national average.
LinkedIn is currently amending our Migration analysis methodology and we will include an expanded migration section in a forthcoming report.