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ONS data shows 40% jump in demand for UK warehouse workers


Demand for UK warehouse workers has risen by 43% compared with pre-pandemic levels – with the number of online job adverts for staff in the North East nearly doubling, according to an analysis of new ONS data by Indeed Flex, the online staffing platform for temporary work.

It’s a pattern repeated across the country as employers in many sectors struggle to find staff. The biggest jump in demand for warehouse workers is in the North East, while Scotland saw a 60% increase in job adverts towards the end of 2022.

The South East had the highest overall number of job vacancies, with 6,875 positions advertised online in December 2022, an increase of 50% compared to pre-pandemic levels.

With soaring supplier costs and rising wage demands amid the cost of living crisis, logistics companies are feeling the pinch. Indeed Flex offers a way for employers to boost their numbers by using temporary staff.

Additional recent research from Indeed Flex found 58% businesses will be turning to temporary workers to support their permanent teams this year. A quarter (28%) of HR professionals whose business already uses temporary workers expect to make increased use of temps during 2023.

Novo Constare, CEO and co-founder of Indeed Flex, said: “The logistics industry is not alone in its struggle to fill positions — it’s a problem facing most sectors right now.

“During the pandemic warehouse staff were classified as essential workers and many turned to the sector to see them through furlough or support them after a job loss.

“But as life returned to normal and people went back to their previous jobs, warehouses across the country experienced a mass exodus of staff and a lot of companies haven’t recovered since.

“On top of rising costs and stretched budgets, it’s a difficult position for companies to be in. Many hiring managers have come to see temporary staff as a vital resource for them.”

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