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Published on April 24th, 2020 | by The GC Team

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Retail jobs down 14% in first quarter of 2020

Retail job numbers dropped by 14% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2020 in what has been described as a “tumultuous start to the year” for the industry.

According to a report from CV-Library, which claims to be the UK’s leading independent job board, the fall was the sixth highest of all the sectors analysed, and a quarter-on-quarter decline of 24.6% is even more grim for the industry.  

Applications for retail vacancies also fell, down 24.3% on Q1 2019 last year, but pay in the sector increased by 5.8% year-on-year and 3.3% quarter-on-quarter.

Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of CV-Library, said: “It really has been a tumultuous start to the year and it’s having a massive impact on retailers and the wider economy.

“While measures are being put in place to protect companies and their employees, the reality is that both Brexit and the coronavirus pandemic will have long-lasting effects on the UK labour market and we’re already starting to see this in the retail industry. 

“The job market has been largely candidate driven for a number of years now and this meant that businesses had no choice but to hike up their pay packets in order to attract applicants to their roles. However, this is set to change. Unemployment rates are set to soar in the coming months and this could be financially devastating for UK professionals.” 

Biggins added that it is difficult to predict how the labour market will perform in the next quarter, “but sadly,” he commented, “it doesn’t look promising.” 

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