Some 59 per cent of retail & wholesale businesses plan to create jobs over the next 12 months, according to a new study by Barclays Corporate.
The Job Creation Survey shows that almost half (46 per cent) of the businesses executives questioned indicated that they expect to create full-time jobs over the next 12 months, with 47 per cent of the retail & wholesale sector saying they were looking for full-time employees.
Most respondents revealed they would be looking to fill middle management or skilled-level roles, although only 23 per cent of those in the retail & wholesale sector said they would be “quite interested” in taking on public sector employees who lose their jobs.
Thousands of public sector workers are expected to be unemployed in the months ahead following cuts announced in the government’s Comprehensive Spending Review last autumn, and 30 per cent of survey respondents from a retail background are “not at all interested” in taking on these workers.
Barclays Corporate interviewed 500 executives from UK businesses of all sizes and varying sectors for the research.
Richard Lowe, Managing Director and Head of Retail & Wholesale at Barclays Corporate, commented: “Job creation is vital for a sustainable economic recovery, and while these survey results are encouraging, they also highlight that many businesses remain risk adverse when it comes to creating new positions in order to drive growth.
“But if economic uncertainty is the new normal, confidence needs to come more from the ability to generate new orders and growth within a business, rather than focusing too heavily on the economic backdrop.
“Increased confidence and therefore investment feeds into a positive cycle in which job creation is an inevitable output. Banks have a key role to play in supporting this cycle.”
Whereas the new survey paints retail & wholesale in a positive light, a report published last week from the Association of Business Recovery Professionals R3 said the sector could see more insolvencies than any other in 2011.
The recent VAT increase and rising business property rates were the two main reasons given for the gloomy industry outlook, but today’s research suggests the industry will be a key player in the UK’s economic recovery.