The UK workforce on the payroll rose by 71,000 between July and August to 29.7 million, according to the Office for National Statistics.
Unemployment is now at its lowest level from May to July 1974.
This comes from recent data showing that the UK economy grew more slowly than expected in July as labor shortages and soaring spending weighed on activity amid heightened recession risks.
The Office for National Statistics reported that gross domestic product (GDP) rose 0.2% in July after a sharp 0.6% fall in June, when extra holidays for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee led to lower activity.
City economists had forecast a stronger 0.4% recovery from a fall a month earlier. Reflecting the weakness of the economy, GDP growth remained flat in the three months to July, with a decline in the UK’s dominant service sector offset by stronger activity in manufacturing and construction.
Retailers compete for workers among themselves as well as with competing sectors such as the hospitality industry, said Linda Ellett, KPMG’s head of consumer markets, retail and leisure.
“It’s people in stores, people in warehouses and logistics – they’re no longer seen as attractive roles,” Ms Ellett said. At the same time, retailers are “concerned about seasonal staff, especially in the supply chain,” she added. About two weeks ago, John Lewis said it would take on 10,000 holiday employees by offering workers free meals during this period to help with rising costs of living.
“If things like food and hygiene products are available, then that’s the savings that workers can make, so it’s a creative way to make employment more attractive that costs the retailer less than paying more money to workers,” Ms. Ms. Ellett.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /