Quarterly economic survey results

It was great to see some positivity this week in the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce quarterly economic survey. It showed that confidence is on the up amongst manufacturers, and is higher than any time since the onset of the financial crisis. Despite this, 58% of manufacturing firms surveyed said they had recruitment problems.

Whilst 74% of firms surveyed are confident that turnover will improve over the next 12 months, 52% said sales had already improved and 37% said recruitment was up. However, with only 24% expecting to recruit in the next quarter, it shows the ‘feel good’ factor is still somewhat lacking.

Recruitment in the service sector is still posing a problem, with 52% experiencing difficulties and 31% actively looking to recruit. This is in areas including transport, distribution, retail, wholesale, hotels and catering having this problem.

The skills gap is an ongoing issue, and the Chamber is supporting this cause with a National Apprenticeship Service skills show at the NEC.