Jobs market recovering with fewer out of work in Shropshire

The jobs market has continued its recovery with the number of payrolled workers jumping last month, but wages have continued to lag behind soaring inflation, according to official figures.

The Jobcentre in The Square, Shrewsbury
The Jobcentre in The Square, Shrewsbury

The Office for National Statistics said the number of UK workers on payrolls rose by 108,000 between December and January to 29.5 million.

The unemployment rate also reduced by 0.2 percentage points to 4.1 per cent over the three months to December. There were 1.37 million out of work.

Meanwhile, total pay growth rose to 4.3 per cent for the quarter to December – from 4.2 per cent for the three months to November – but continued to lag behind inflation, which soared to a near 30-year high of 5.4 per cent in December.

The unemployment rate for the West Midlands – including Shropshire – for the three months to December was 147,000 – a rate of 4.9 per cent of the working population. The number in employment was 2.82 million.

Numbers claiming unemployment benefits, including Universal Credit, fell across the West Midlands in January by 3,115 from December to 197,850 – 5.4 per cent of the working population.

There were fewer people claiming unemployment benefits across the region. Shropshire had a drop of 65 to 5,580 with Telford and Wrekin also down by 95 to 4,715. Powys bucked the trend with a slight rise of 10 to 2,165 claimants.

Ben Marr, partnership manager (Shropshire) for the Department for Work and Pensions, said: “The jobs market in Shropshire continues to recover and shows real growth, with an increasing number of vacancies in different sectors, including care, retail and hospitality, which remain key areas of the Shropshire employment market.

"There are also emerging opportunities in manufacturing, within the food industries sector and also engineering. The latest figures show the number of online job adverts in the West Midlands have risen by 21.5 per cent since Covid-19.

"To help ensure that these growing vacancies are filled, DWP this month launched its ‘Way to Work’ campaign to help fill the record numbers of vacancies at pace, supporting ‘job-ready’ people into the labour market and helping them progress into a career.

"Jobseekers in Shropshire will be supported with more time spent face-to-face with a work coach to receive better, tailored support. The new Jobcentres in Shropshire and Telford as well as the four youth hubs across the region will ensure we have the capacity to deliver this additional support.

"To further provide practical support to jobseekers, the Jobcentres will be offering sector-based work academy programmes in the coming weeks for retail, administration, hospitality, care, heavy goods vehicle licence and also fork lift truck licence. This will help to provide job ready people, into job vacancies, in these vital key sectors.

"Shropshire Jobcentres and our youth hubs will also continue to support young jobseekers to find work under the national Kickstart scheme. This is the last call for Kickstart as the scheme is coming to an end, with final applications to be received by February 28. We still have over 300 Kickstart vacancies in Shropshire with a wide range of amazing opportunities, ranging across different sectors, from a gardener to a trainee journalist. It has been a fantastic scheme which has changed many young people’s lives, offering many their first paid job, as well as the opportunity to learn vital key skills."

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said: “Our £400 billion economic plan has protected our jobs market through the pandemic and it is now healthier than most could have hoped for.

“Payrolled employee numbers are at a record high and redundancies are at an all-time low thanks to our plan for jobs.

“We’re continuing to help more people into work and are providing support for the cost of living worth over £20bn across this financial year and next.”

Sorry, we are not accepting comments on this article.

Top Stories

More from the Shropshire Star

UK & International News