The overall economic picture for project professionals has worsened over the past 12 months. After two years of positive results, fewer respondents now say their employer is planning to grow while more report that their organisation is experiencing a downturn.
The proportion reporting that their organisation is looking to recruit has decreased significantly from 51per cent last year to 41 per cent. This is due to significantly more reporting that their organisation is experiencing a downturn and making redundancies (increasing from nine per cent last year to 17 per cent). Of those whose said their employer is making redundancies, the majority claim it is as a result of the coronavirus pandemic (91 per cent).
The regional picture gives more details: plans to grow through recruitment have dropped significantly in Wales (53 per cent last year; 38 per cent this year) and Scotland (54 per cent last year; 36 per cent this year).
However, while they may not be planning to recruit, a sizeable majority (66 per cent) of Scottish professionals remain positive about their organisation’s future growth overall, a sentiment shared by those in the South West (72 per cent) and the North East (67 per cent).
As for the sectoral split, respondents working in aerospace (19 per cent last year; 52 per cent this year) and energy and utilities (11 per cent last year; 26 per cent this year) reported a downturn in activity as well as their organisations having to make redundancies. Central government, on the other hand, saw higher levels of optimism, with 62 per cent expecting to see increased growth and recruitment – perhaps reflective of government’s role in the post outbreak rebuild.