15/04/2013

NI Firms More Optimistic On Job Creation Over The Next Year

The Barclays Job Creation Survey 2013, which questioned over 700 UK businesses, has revealed that Northern Ireland business executives have a growing optimism around private sector job growth in 2013.

Last year's survey findings highlighted Northern Ireland as the most pessimistic region in the UK, with 44% of respondents stating there would a major shortfall in private sector job growth. In 2013 only 24% believe this to be the case, and 28% believe that the private sector will more than compensate or balance out public sector job losses.

The survey also reveals that business confidence in Northern Ireland is positive with 49% of respondents planning to create jobs over the next 12 months. Northern Ireland also tops the poll in being the region most likely to create jobs at the middle/junior management level (97%).

Northern Ireland and Wales are more likely to say that sales increases will lead to job creation (91%, compared to an average of 73%). Although most UK businesses believe sales increases lead to job creation, a downwards trend has been noted in this regard (73% in 2013, 77% in 2012 and 78% in 2011).

The vast majority (81%) of Northern Ireland companies believe that Government efforts to remove barriers to job creation are having no impact on their business, although this is a slight improvement on last year (87%).

Meanwhile, in relation to employment prospects of ex-public sector workers, Northern Ireland businesses were relatively positive, with 38% of businesses 'very' or 'quite' interested in taking on ex public sector workers.

Commenting on these findings, Adrian Doran, Head of Corporate Banking, Barclays Northern Ireland, said: "Our survey has highlighted an improving level of confidence in the Northern Ireland companies regarding private sector job growth, with nearly half of businesses surveyed planning on creating new jobs in the next 12 months. This is a positive sign, and hopefully signals the start of a wider sense of optimism returning to the business community."

(CD)

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