Salaries likely to rise, says recruitment firm

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SALARIES could rise in certain sectors this year as employers compete for staff, a Bury St Edmunds-based recruitment specialist has predicted.

Cooper Lomaz predicts the upturn following its eighth annual salary survey – although it also found many firms are looking at merging roles and asking staff to multi-skill.

Jane Lovell, who helped to found the firm during the last recession in the nineties, said: “2010 was challenging because of general uncertainty but we are seeing new business, particularly E-commerce business and digital marketing.

“Clients are looking for more skills and competencies. They want good people who are on brand and on message.”

The survey showed a marked increase in demand for IT specialists as more businesses look to new media and alternative routes to market themselves. And with more competition for niche skills, the survey said East Anglia will have to compete with business rates in the south.

“Although generally there are high levels of response to jobs, there are some areas where we are struggling to recruit specific skills. Also because of the economic uncertainty some people are passive about changing jobs which is where social networking and contacts come in,” said Jane.

The Bury branch has specific responsibility for recruiting in the food manufacturing, supply chain, engineering, HR and sales and marketing sectors.

The food manufacturing and fresh produce sector, it says, has remaind buoyant with companies investing in machinery and staff, while focusing on quality standards and new product lines to keep customers interested.

Logistics, senior purchasing, distribution and warehousing have also reported an increase in jobs.

It was not all good news. Some companies are turning to marketing agencies instead of employing staff, when advertising new jobs, many employers have no intention of paying the higher end of the salary range, and a flood of candidates available due to redundancies in the public and banking sectors has led to a salary fall.