Scotland business

Permanent job placements 'rise sharply' in Scotland

Image caption The hotel and catering sector saw a sharp increase in job vacancies last month, according to the Markit report

Scottish recruiters have reported the sharpest rise in the number of people placed in permanent jobs since last July.

A survey by financial information services firm Markit found salaries also picked up last month amid a stronger rise in demand for staff.

However, billings in the temporary jobs market increased in February at their slowest rate for 10 months.

Hourly pay rates for temp workers rose, but at a slower pace than in January.

Meanwhile, starting salaries for permanent jobs rose sharply, having accelerated from January's 29-month low. However, the increase was less marked than across the UK as a whole.

The survey suggested a strong rise in demand for permanent staff, with growth in vacancies particularly sharp in the nursing/medical/care, IT and computing and hotel and catering sectors.

'Good news'

The same three categories also led growth in demand for temp staff.

The availability of candidates for permanent vacancies deteriorated in February, in line with a trend seen over the past four years.

Temporary candidate availability also worsened during the month.

Markit economist Phil Smith said: "The jobs market in Scotland saw a lift in February as permanent placements increased at the fastest rate for seven months.

"There was also good news on the pay front, with stronger demand for new hires and competitive pressures helping drive salary inflation to the highest since last July.

"However, there are a number of potential hurdles facing the jobs market in the coming year, starting with the introduction of the National Living Wage on 1 April.

"It will be interesting to see how this affects demand for staff across sectors."

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