Better Employment Prospects: A Double Edged Blade

Could 2014 be the year things finally take a turn for the better for the hapless legions of unemployed, poorer-than-when-they-were studying grads of recent years? The self-proclaimed ‘Voice of Business’ member’s organisation CBI certainly seem to think so anyway.

According to a report issued by the group in the last few days, more businesses are set to create jobs than not create jobs, for the very first time since 2008. The news has understandably brought on a certain degree of festive cheer for University leavers who are yet to find an entry level role in their field, having endured five consistent years of cuts, lay-offs, temp work and general government/economy ratified misery.

On The Up

Speaking to some 325 organisations which collectively employ more than 1 million individuals, the report, fittingly entitled ‘On The Up’, claims that over half of these firms expect their workforces to have grown within the next 12 months. Graduates in Yorkshire, the East Midlands and Humberside will be pleased to know that they may set their hopes for imminent employment the highest.

Whilst the number of roles being made available is set to increase, most of the studies participants told a different story altogether when it came to pay. Though just 7% expect to pay more than the level as dictated by RPI inflation,  a third do plot wage rises; just below this figure.

In total, four out of five of all organisations surveyed for the study committed to supplying new job opportunities for young people in 2014. The CBI’s chief policy director, Katja Hall stating: “we’re starting to see the recovery have an impact on businesses plans to hire, with more than half of firms boosting staff numbers next year and more opportunities for young people.”

A Double Edged Blade

Though it's indisputably excellent news that so many businesses are projecting growth in the coming 12 months, we cannot overlook the fact that pay levels, for the most part, are set to remain where they are. Mr Osborne assured us recently that the economy is finally gathering pace; and if this study proves true, then it would seem he is right. Similarly however, Mr (Ed) Miliband’s assertions that the cost, and thus the standard of living in the UK is remaining static- also appear to ring true.

The whole situation could very well be described as a double-edged blade, though one that is made of numbers and charts and statistics and novelty ties as opposed to steel and wood and leather. On the one hand, more of us graduates can expect to be in employment by this time next year, whilst on other- we needn’t get excited about the rates of pay we’re likely to encounter.

Perhaps worst of all is that we’ll be branded as ungrateful for complaining about this. I for one find that eventuality particularly farcical, how about you?