Recruitment and salaries shows upturn in Scotland
Recruitment has picked up in Scotland, according to a survey from Markit data consultancy.
But a shortage of available recruits is reported to be helping to push up starting salaries.
Evidence collated from about 100 employment consultants during March showed the fourth consecutive month of increasing permanent placements.
This was at a faster rate than the UK average, but slower than the figure for February.
However, the survey evidence suggested the growth in temporary postings has been only modest, and slower than the UK as a whole.
It pointed to a pick-up in demand for further permanent recruits. And the increase in temporary jobs becoming available was the strongest since December 2014.
The strongest growth in hiring was in health and social care, computing and hospitality. However, there were declines in demand for senior management, professionals and blue collar roles.
The fall in the availability of suitable recruits was the sharpest since last July.
Starting salaries in permanent jobs were on the rise in March, as were hourly rates of pay for temporary staff. However, the rate of pay inflation appeared to be slowing from February.
The Markit survey evidence comes after other economic indicators pointed to tough trading conditions for private sector firms during autumn and winter, but some signs of more optimism about the months ahead.