Tightening grip - One in five employers brace for hiring struggles

Darryl Horn, Monday, 12 February 2024 • 2 min read

Tightening grip - One in five employers brace for hiring struggles

The hunt for talent just got trickier. A recent survey by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) reveals that 21% of employers anticipate significant challenges filling vacancies in the first half of 2024.

While this figure represents a slight improvement from previous quarters, it still paints a picture of a competitive and difficult hiring landscape.

Key findings from the CIPD report:

  • 38% of organisations currently have hard-to-fill vacancies.

  • Sectors most affected: education, public administration, transport & storage, manufacturing, and the voluntary sector.

  • Public sector: faces steeper challenges, with 42% expecting significant recruitment difficulties.

  • Pay growth: expected to reach 4% in the private sector in 2024, reflecting the tight labour market.

Jon Boys, Senior Labour Market Economist at the CIPD, comments:

"We've seen a sustained period of high wage growth, and with inflation pushing up living costs, pay remains a key factor in attracting and retaining talent. But to achieve long-term growth, businesses need to invest in upskilling their workforce and embracing technology to boost productivity."

What can employers do?

The CIPD offers several strategies to navigate the current hiring climate:

  • Offer competitive compensation and benefits: Conduct regular salary reviews and consider flexible work arrangements and other perks to attract talent.

  • Focus on skills development: Invest in training and upskilling programs to bridge the skills gap and build a more adaptable workforce.

  • Diversify your talent pool: Broaden your recruitment reach to include under-represented groups and consider alternative talent sources like apprenticeships or upskilling programs.

  • Streamline your recruitment process: Minimise application barriers, offer clear communication, and leverage technology to expedite the hiring process.

  • Promote employer branding: Highlight your company culture, values, and mission to attract candidates who resonate with your organisation.

Remember: Building a strong employer brand and fostering a positive workplace experience are crucial to attracting and retaining top talent in a competitive market.

Additional resources:

By acknowledging the current challenges and adopting proactive strategies, employers can navigate the tight labour market and secure the talent they need to thrive.

This article was first published on 12/2/24.

Article categories

About the author


Darryl is a Chartered CIPD Member, business leader and operational manager with 30 years experience in on-the-ground and strategic HR, specialising in Human Resources Management, Employment Law, Employee Relations and Learning & Development.


I have just renewed our membership for another year for HRdocbox. It's an extremely useful resource with a wide variety of documents and knowledge...
- Rachel Masing, ETM Group

I have been using the service now for around 6 months and it has been really useful in developing and updating polices and processes.
- Jamie Allan, Armstrong Craven

Excellent library of resources and templates which have made my job in my small business so much easier to manage HR for my employees...
- Emma Hunt

Great value and the site contains an extensive library of essential HR documents. I access the site probably once a week...
- Laura Alliss-Etty

HRDocBox is a great resource. It is incredibly good value, providing a large selection of HR guidance materials as well as...
- Emma Beauchamp