An interesting insight into the effect on employment of the state of the economy is provided by the Workplace Employment Relations Study published today. The study is a UK-based study. It reveals some interesting findings:

  • By September 2012 employment in the UK has returned to pre-recessionary levels in absolute terms although down in real terms because of population increase.

  • During the period 2008 and 2009 private sector employment fell substantially whilst public sector employment rose. However, since 2010 that trend has been reversed with private sector employment rising and public sector employment falling.

  • There has been a doubling in the number of employers making increasing use of zero hours contracts but less use of agency staff. The use of fixed term contracts has remained more or less static.

  • Increasingly employers are seeking advice on employment related matters from external professionals such as lawyers. The increase is 20%.

  • One of the most surprising findings relates to the low level of the use of mediation by employers to resolve disputes. Of all employers, only 7% had used mediation in the preceding 12 months in relation to individual disputes. Of that number 4% used an internal mediator.

The full report can be found here.

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