What to watch: 5 sectors set for growth in 2021

Recruitment is an ever-changing industry. Even in a ‘normal’ year, the industry can be unpredictable with so many different influences from business, society and the world in general. But thanks to the catastrophic impact of COVID 19 on the job market during 2020, it’s only been harder to plan for the future and keep track of where the growth areas are. But what will happen in 2021?  

Despite the decline in recruitment over the last 12 months, the latest sources believe the recruitment industry is now beginning to show signs of recovery. It will likely be a slow process, but rapidly growing demand for new jobs across certain industries and specialisms will play a crucial role.

So where can the recruitment industry expect to see the greatest demand over the next 12 months?

There has been a shortage of staff across the NHS for several years, but with the strain of the pandemic on resources and the new government committing to spending an extra £34bn or so by 2023/24 (recruiting 31,500 new nurses and an extra 5,000 GPs), it could be a huge opportunity for recruiters – especially those with connections abroad, where many of the extra medics may come from (certainly in the short term).

The growth in demand also spans across to social care. With estimates of around 14% more jobs becoming available in the sector over the next year, there’s increased choice for those looking to move within, or into the industry.

IT & Communications
Perhaps it’s inevitable, but the tech sectors continue to flourish like never before. COVID19 has forced more people online than ever before and with remote working, online classes and ecommerce stores set to stay, this sector will continue to present a huge opportunity for recruiters.

Growth in actual computing power may be slowing, but its broader impact on other sectors means there’s incessant demand for the right people. Data’s the big thing now – as is cyber and cloud security – according to recent research by the BLS, cybersecurity jobs will grow by 31% through to 2029. And according to an IBM report, “machine learning, big data and data science skills are the most challenging to recruit for and can potentially create the greatest disruption if not filled.” Which presents recruiters with another huge opportunity in a specialist sector.

Climate emergency, Extinction Rebellion, Greta Thunberg and even Sir David Attenborough rarely seem to have been far from the headlines in 2021 – and it’s focused leaders’ minds on making all sorts of environmental commitments, particularly in sourcing energy. Wind and solar energy generated 30% of Britain’s electricity in 2020, and with the government’s pledge to be carbon neutral by 2050, this trend will only grow – so expect strong growth in positions in this sector. It’s estimated that by 2027, 221,000 new recruits will be needed to fill the skills gap.

The automotive industry is going through a period of great change, as carmakers switch from fossil fuels to electric/hydrogen-powered vehicles – so while sales may currently be at a low ebb, there’s real demand for engineers in the industry to help bring in these new technologies. Part of that is the infrastructure needed for practical electric-powered transport – just part of the government’s major £100bn commitment to a range of infrastructure projects including HS2, full-fibre broadband, road and rail upgrades, the Northern Powerhouse and more. Which, in turn, will need more engineers…

Online Learning and Education

As UK schools were forced to close and teachers tasked with moving learning online, online education resources have become a necessity for pupils at every year of education. For younger students, the transition to online learning may only cover certain elements, such as homework or tutoring, but the access to online materials and learning will be set to grow across colleges and universities all over.

Others worth watching…
Of course, many other sectors may prove just as big an opportunity. Financial services, logistics & distribution and the public sector are just three, but their prosperity has been affected by Brexit, political uncertainty, and the continued disruption of the COVID19 pandemic.

Wherever you find success in 2021, the team at Back Office can help your recruitment agency run smoothly and efficiently – leaving you to focus on what you do best. If you’d like to know more, just contact us on 01260 280 290.

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