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Recrutiment & Employment Confederation

REC responds to Labour party business announcements - REC

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Commenting on today’s business announcements by the Labour party, Kate Shoesmith, REC Deputy Chief Executive, said:

“Labour must follow through on its commitment to partner with business and job market experts to lessen ongoing skills and labour shortages, economic inactivity and exploitative contracts, and thereby deliver better work, better productivity and growth. But this must include a robust debate of why retaining a flexible labour market is as much pro-worker as pro-business. This is evident in our recent research which found a staggering demand for flexible work – with 25.7 million temporary and contract placements made by recruiters in 2022.

“Nowhere in the world has really banned zero hours contracts which suggests a more nuanced, rather than knee-jerk, debate is needed about their future.

“We cannot overstate how much employers want to work with politicians on the roadmap to much-needed economic growth. This makes today’s promise of pro-growth policies by Labour, such as greater stability in taxation, helpful in unlocking employers’ confidence in investing and hiring in their own businesses.

"Labour’s ambition to help small businesses must include reform of immigration, skills and training, as well as a broad review of public procurement rules. After all, more than four-in-five small employers with less than 50 staff are reporting shortages of candidates for their roles. This is a concern because they make up 99% of all business in the UK.”


Notes to editors: 

  1. Worker shortages hit small employers the most – REC, January 2024
  2. Recruiters filled 25 million temp and contract roles in a year, according to the latest REC industry report, December 2023

Click here to view all REC press releases and for more information and interview enquiries, contact the REC Press Office on 020 7009 2157, 020 7009 2129 or Outside of regular office hours, please call 07702 568 829.

The REC is the voice of the recruitment industry, speaking up for great recruiters. We drive standards and empower recruitment businesses to build better futures for great candidates and themselves. We are champions of an industry which is fundamental to the strength of the UK economy.

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