Could Rising Inflation Mark the Beginning of a New Rush for Temporary Work?

Data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) suggests that the number of temporary workers has fallen by 2.3% in the months between June and August 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. In June-August 2022, there were 1.65 million temporary workers in the UK.

However, could rising inflation mark the beginning of another temporary work rush? With the prices of food, energy and transport rising significantly over the last few months, households are feeling a squeeze on their incomes, and this may only get worse as we head into the winter months. According to a BBC survey, 85% of people are worried about the rising cost of living, which could push more people to look for temporary work to push their income and make the rising costs more manageable.

Furthermore, at the same time, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) recently released the new unemployment statistics with the unemployment rate being at its lowest rate in 50 years – 3.5%. This comes as the number of job vacancies has continued to fall in the UK after a boom since the Covid slump. With the looming recession, the Bank of England predicts that unemployment will only rise to 5-6%, which is much lower than the rate of 8% after the 2008 recession. This could be a good time to look for temporary work as well because the UK labour market has a labour shortage at the moment, so temporary work may be increasingly used during this recession to keep businesses productive.

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