There’s no sugar coating it – the coronavirus pandemic has had a catastrophic effect on the UK labour market. As of 7 September there have been 194,700 redundancies since April and over 9 million people have been placed on the government’s temporary furlough scheme. While many of those furloughed have now returned to work, more redundancies are expected when the scheme ends in October and this, coupled with wide scale hiring freezes, has seen experts put the estimate for jobs lost in the UK during the virus at somewhere between 750,000 and 6.5 million.
“The extraordinary events of 2020 have plunged the UK’s labour market into a period of rapid, profound flux,” explains Jack Kennedy, UK economist at global job site Indeed. “Tens of thousands of people with good jobs they enjoy have been forced to confront a stark reality – their job simply doesn’t exist any more. With entire sectors of the economy brought to a juddering halt by lockdown, for some workers it’s been less of a case of having to look for a new job, as looking for a whole new industry to work in. But for others – especially older workers – it has meant dropping out of the workforce altogether. In the second quarter of the year an additional 75,000 people became economically inactive, effectively disappearing from the labour market.”
This is especially true, says Kennedy, in the hardest hit sectors, such as hospitality, tourism and beauty and wellness. However, if you are one of the many currently searching for a new role, don’t despair. Indeed’s latest research shows that, if you’re flexible, there are jobs out there to be had and new postings are rising in certain areas. Here are the UK sectors hiring now…
The Indeed Hiring Lab has recorded a 16.7% increase in new construction industry jobs since 4 August. While this is still down on the number of jobs advertised the same time last year, it is a hopeful sign – especially as construction encompasses a wide variety of roles with on-the-job training and transferable skills, so you don’t necessarily have to have a wealth of experience to land a great role. Many of the construction jobs currently advertised do fall under the builder and labourer categories but, if you’re not particularly hands on, there are also plenty of roles in project management, administration, surveying and engineering that may fit the bill.
Medical information services
Got a science background? Now is the perfect time to pivot to a career in the medical information sector. Indeed has recorded a 16% increase in medical information roles in the past month and, as a perhaps lesser known sector, it could be a great time to explore a new career in the industry. A typical job in medical information involves responding to healthcare professionals, creating and distributing information around new medications and providing internal education for pharmaceutical companies. Plus, with companies in the sector located all over the UK, you can finally make that move to the country too.
Physicians and surgeons
This one is a bit of a no brainer – we’re in the middle of a pandemic so doctors are in high demand. However, is you’re not a qualified doctor, there are still plenty of roles in the medical sphere you may be qualified for. Have a science-based degree? There’s a rewarding careers to be found as a Physician Associate. Or perhaps something in research, medical writing or clinical management is more suited to your skill set? A little bit of research and you could find there are a wealth of opportunities in medicine you never considered.
IT and digital technology
The move to home working and the boom in use of services like Zoom means those with a background in IT, web development and programming are highly sought after right now. This is also true of those with experience in e-commerce (as more and more brands pivot rapidly to online-first models) and automation processes for factories where social distancing is not viable. The good news is, if your digital skills are a little lacking, there are plenty of accredited online courses you can take to boost your CV and help secure a role in this growing sector.
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