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One in four businesses have increased headcount by a quarter in past year PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 15 July 2015

One in four businesses have increased their headcount by a quarter over the past year, according to research from a recently released report, with the trend expected to last for at least the next 12 months, as 42% of businesses anticipate a growth in their headcount during that period.

The findings suggest that construction firms and charities are experiencing a particular boom, with 86.6% of businesses in the construction industry looking to increase headcount over the coming year, whilst 53.9% of charities are also aiming to grow theirs during that time.

The research, conducted by Morgan Redwood, a leading expert in leadership development, is based on responses from the Heads of Human Resource departments or Board Director level from over 250 businesses.  These have been drawn from across the UK and from a mix of sectors and a range of company sizes, with two thirds employing over 250 people, and none less than 50.

Janice Haddon, MD of Morgan Redwood said: “With widespread increases in headcount, the trend certainly suggests that we’re on a steady return to economic prosperity. Whilst business growth should clearly be welcomed, this growth also brings new challenges with it. Dealing with increased staff numbers can cause fresh problems, which means efficient leadership becomes ever more important.”

The figures revealed by the study suggest that headcount increases have been of considerable size. Of the businesses that increased their staffing levels, 25.2% did so by a quarter, whilst as many as one in six (15.9%) saw staff size jump by more than 30%.

In addition to this a further 18.7% of those that increased their headcount did so by a fifth, suggesting that three out of five businesses which have upped their headcount in the last year have done so by a fifth or more.

Janice commented: “These are big jumps in staff numbers, suggesting that business leaders are confident in their markets and keen to take advantage of economic opportunities. Taking on new staff can be a risk and put cash flow under pressure. With firms growing by such large margins, the risk is only increased. Businesses also need to be aware of the HR demands of recruiting and inducting quality employees, which means that planning strategically and making sure that sufficient protocols are in place is essential.”

The report also revealed that only 9.20% – less than one in ten businesses – have actively decreased their headcount in the past year, and over the next 12 months this figure is anticipated to rise only slightly to 10.80%.

Janice concluded: “The overall figures indicate that business is booming and that an increased workforce is necessary as a result. Firms need to be aware though of the importance of keeping the appropriate management structures in place to make sure that everything runs effectively. They’ll need strong leadership in place to ensure that the additional employees are beneficial rather than detrimental.”

(Source - Morgan Redwood News Release)  


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