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Stafforce Insider

Winter Issue

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Your Stafforce Insider

Your Stafforce Insider

Welcome to the Winter issue of our Newsletter

Believe it or not, we’re just three Mondays away from Christmas! But before you sign off for the festivities, let’s dive into the latest industry trends, insights, developments, and news.

In this issue, you can find:

  • Latest ONS Labour Market Statistics & 2024 Economic Changes
  • ALP Labour Supply Chain Survey Findings
  • HSE Annual Statistics Report 2023
  • StrongerTogether Latest Video
  • Claim your Health & Safety Training Course Discount
  • Lessons in Leadership Interview: Allan Joyce, Managing Director at Balmoral Tanks
  • Upcoming Employment Law Update
  • Our Charity Shoebox Appeal
  • Sustainability: GreentheUK Progress

Latest Labour Market Statistics

The latest report from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) provides insights into the UK’s economy and labour market. Key findings include a dip in employment and unemployment remaining unchanged, with job vacancies continuing to decline. Economic inactivity was largely unchanged whilst Labour disputes from the Health & Social Work and Education sectors saw a rise in lost workdays. Payroll numbers have been revised from last month’s update and increased. Annual pay growth slightly dropped, with total pay affected by one-off bonus payments. After accounting for inflation, real pay growth remained modest.

Here are some important statistics from the November 2023 overview, see below and read the full report here

  • Payroll Payroll


    The number of payrolled employees is now well above pre-pandemic levels at 30.2 million

  • Employment Rate Employment Rate

    Employment Rate

    The adjusted experimental employment rate is down on the quarter but up on the year, and is still below pre-pandemic rates at 75.7%

  • Unemployment Rate Unemployment Rate

    Unemployment Rate

    The adjusted experimental unemployment rate is unchanged on the quarter but up on the year, and above pre-pandemic rates at 4.2%

  • Economic Inactivity Economic Inactivity

    Economic Inactivity

    The adjusted experimental economic inactivity rate is unchanged on the quarter and down on the year, but still above pre-pandemic rates at 20.9%

  • Vacancies Vacancies


    Vacancies decreased on the quarter but are above pre-pandemic levels at 957,000

  • Real Earnings Real Earnings

    Real Earnings

    As inflation has started to reduce, real annual growth rates have started to increase to 1.3% without bonuses and 1.4% with bonuses

Economic Changes in 2024

The Government has recently announced the new rates for the National Living Wage (NLW) and National Minimum Wage (NMW) which will come into effect from April 2024. The NLW rate will increase by almost 10% to £11.44 from April 2024, which is an increase of £1.02 compared to the current rate. Additionally, the National Living Wage rate will be extended to those aged 21 and above, down from the current age threshold of 23. Read more.

In his Autumn Statement, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced several changes that will come into effect in April 2024. These changes include a reduction in employee national insurance from 12% to 10%, an expected fall in inflation to 2.8% by the end of 2024, a 6.7% increase in benefits, and tougher requirements for those who claim to look for work. The state pension will also be increased to 8.5%, and full expensing will become permanent, allowing businesses to offset investments in items such as new IT equipment and factory machinery against tax. Additionally, the chancellor is investing an extra £4.5bn in manufacturing, among other changes. You can read the details of all the upcoming changes here.

ALP Labour Supply Chain Report Findings

ALP Labour Supply Chain Report Findings

The Association of Labour Providers (ALP) has conducted labour market surveys of labour providers and labour users (employers) since 2017 to provide data and trends to inform access to labour policy and priorities for the UK labour supply chain.

The latest report indicates that the labour market has been at its worst for over 35 years and states that the Government need to have a serious rethink in order to support business overall as costs are spiralling out of control and this is having a significant impact on the economy.

Their UK Labour Supply Chain Results for October 2023 show key findings such as:-

  • 48% of businesses are experiencing labour shortages
  • 68% of labour providers stated the biggest impact of labour shortages is increased recruitment costs
  • 62% of businesses have seen labour costs increase in 2023
  • 56% of labour providers are supplying fewer workers
  • Only 28% of labour providers tried to pass on increased recruitment costs. Most clients haven’t covered these increased costs

You can discover their full report by clicking below.

HSE Annual Work-Related Ill Health and Injury Statistics

HSE Annual Work-Related Ill Health and Injury Statistics

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recently released their annual statistical report, unveiling some key findings. Reporting that in the period 2022/23, almost two million employees in Great Britain faced work-related ill health. HSE further reported:-

  • 1.8 million working people suffering from a work-related illness, of which
    • 875,000 workers suffering work-related stress, depression or anxiety
    • 473,000 workers suffering from a work-related musculoskeletal disorder
  • 2,268 mesothelioma deaths due to past asbestos exposures (2021)
  • 135 workers killed in work-related accidents
  • 561,000 working people sustained an injury at work according to the Labour Force Survey
  • 60,645 injuries to employees reported under RIDDOR
  • 35.2 million working days lost due to work-related illness and workplace injury
  • £20.7 billion estimated cost of injuries and ill health from current working conditions (2021/22)

Ensuring the well-being of workers is paramount. HSE offer a range of valuable resources on their website that you can download to educate your business and empower your team members.

Latest Awareness Video by StrongerTogether

A new awareness film from StrongerTogether

In partnership with Migrant Help, StrongerTogether has created a new animation to support businesses in raising awareness of the signs of labour exploitation throughout their operations and supply chains.

It’s crucial for businesses to be vigilant and educate employees on signs of exploitation and how to respond. Remaining aware that not all people affected by modern slavery display these signs. These can be physical and psychological. Remember, if anything doesn’t feel right contact Modern Slavery Helpline or Gangmasters Labour Abuse Authority.

StrongerTogether provides businesses with practical training, resources, business services and collaborative programs to support you.

Training Course Discount

Training Course Discount

Don’t pass up the opportunity to take advantage of the exclusive offer from Stafforce Training! Get a fantastic 10% discount on any training course booked before Christmas. And here’s the best part – this discount is also applicable to future 2024 bookings, as long as they’re initially booked by the end of 2023.

Our wide range of courses includes;

  • Managing Safely & Working Safely
  • Cargo Handling in Ports
  • First Aid & Mental Health First Aid
  • Fire Safety
  • Manual Handling
  • Managing Sustainably

Take this opportunity to boost the skills and knowledge of your team with Stafforce Training!

Lessons in Leadership Interview: Managing Director of Balmoral Tanks

Lessons in Leadership Interview: Managing Director of Balmoral Tanks

Our partner brand, Main-Board, experts in executive recruitment, conduct insightful Lessons in Leadership Interviews with influential senior members of the business community. These interviews provide valuable guidance on achieving success as a business leader, tackling industry challenges, and sharing personal wisdom.

In a recent interview, Allan Joyce, the Managing Director of Balmoral Tanks, shared a remarkable accomplishment. Balmoral Tanks has become the world’s first manufacturing company awarded the prestigious BSI Kitemark Certification for Customer Service and Complaints Management. This is a fantastic achievement for the company.

Balmoral Tanks is a leading design and manufacturing company that provides unique turnkey services spanning civil groundwork, tank design and manufacture, and installation. Producing what is believed to be the most comprehensive range of tank products from a single source.

If you would like to read the full interview with Allan, click ‘Read More‘ below.

Employment Law Update Reaches Record Numbers of Attendees

Employment Law Update Reaches Record Numbers of Attendees

One of our partner brands, Ashley Kate HR & Finance, who are expert recruiters in placing HR & Finance professionals, regularly hosts Employment Law Updates with Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP.

On 2nd November, over 2700 HR professionals registered to join the Employment Law Update.

The session focused on the following pertinent topics within the HR space:

  • Family Friendly Changes –  Navigating adjustments to carer’s leave, neonatal leave and pay, strengthened protection from redundancy and flexible working
  • Harassment at Work – Exploring the significant workplace issue of sexual harassment and the government’s steps towards legal change
  • Artificial Intelligence and HR – Focusing on the increasing use of AI within HR and the key employment law risk areas concerned with this. New regulations and policies are on the horizon.

Recent case law themes were also discussed, concerning the latest developments in holiday pay calculation, privileged communications and the increasing factor of neurodiversity within employment.

Ashley Kate HR & Finance are programming their events for 2024, with their first Employment Law Update being on 15th May 2024.

Please feel free to share this information with your HR team. They may find it useful to attend.

Our Shoebox Appeal

Our Shoebox Appeal

Join us in spreading Christmas cheer

Throughout December, we’re organising a shoe box appeal to collect small gifts and useful items for charities in need, to offer extra support. Collecting items such as:-

  • Toys – Soft toys, balls, yoyos, skipping ropes, building blocks, playing cards, jigsaws, musical instruments, toy cars, dolls, jewellery, balloons
  • Educational – pens, pencils, pencil sharpeners, paper, colouring books, pencil cases, rulers, rubbers, stickers, calculators
  • Personal – toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, sanitary products, hairbrushes, combs, shower gel, soap, flannels
  • Other – socks, scarves, hats, sweets, torches, football shirts, shorts

Each of our teams has carefully selected a local cause to donate to and will be delivering the boxes before Christmas.

Please reach out to your Stafforce representative if you’d like to contribute to your local office’s shoebox donation.

Planting For The Future: GreenTheUK

Planting For The Future: GreenTheUK

Stafforce, part of the Nicholas Associates Group of companies, committed to planting 8000 trees by 2024. This year, we have planted 4,000 climate-resilient trees across the UK.

So far we’ve planted:-

  • 1,240 trees in Northumberland, restoring the woodland after it was devastated by Storm Arwen in 2021
  • 1,520 broadleaf & conifer trees in County Antrim, to improve the habitat for local wildlife
  • 1,240 trees in Berwickshire, to replace the trees lost in windstorms, which are becoming increasingly common

Next year, we are committed to planting another 4,000 trees helping to create woodlands and restore the UK’s tree cover.

You can view our full progress here.

We hope you have a fantastic Christmas, enjoying the festivities. From us all at Stafforce, we’d like to thank you for partnering with us throughout 2023 and we look forward to continuing to support your business in 2024!

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