Global crash

Hospitality hardest hit as 85% of jobs lost in lockdown


Pubs and restaurants have been hard hit (pic: Terry Murden)

Hospitality businesses have been the hardest hit in the UK job market, losing 85% of jobs over the past 14 weeks according to new research.

Extended lock-down restrictions have caused hospitality and travel jobs to plummet, while other major industries begin to slowly stabilise. 

Retail, Construction and Engineering have also fallen, but hospitality has been the biggest casualty. It is the UK’s fourth-largest industry and has lost 43,764 jobs in the period, says job search engine Adzuna.

Across the globe it is estimated that half of hospitality jobs have been lost. 

The UK suffers the worst job losses internationally, with 60% of jobs lost, despite the Government easing lock-down measures to allow workers to go to work if they cannot work from home.

The US, Australia and Russia also experience a similar downfall with losses of 48%, 41% and 40% respectively.

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Travel vacancies continue to drop at an exponential rate, losing 70% of vacancies overall in 14 weeks.

The restriction on all but essential travel has impacted hotels, airlines, cruise lines and other sectors of the travel industry.

The news comes after Europe’s largest travel group TUI warned of 8,000 job cuts. The impact has been variable, with 20.3% of travel jobs lost internationally as countries such as Italy prepare to open borders on 3 June.

Public sector jobs are comparatively unaffected with social working positions falling by 6.9% in over 14 weeks and teaching jobs falling by 36.6%.

Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna, comments: “Key industries such as hospitality continue to bear the brunt of coronavirus pandemic, with only a fraction of jobs available compared to the start of the year.

“However, we are starting to see this downward trend either plateau or reverse across some European markets as lock-down eases and confidence around consumer spending continues to grow. We hope to see this same trend in the UK in the coming months as lock-down eases’.


Trade and Construction (-73.65%)

Online searches last month – 1,900

Open vacancies in the UK – 14,384

Demand for construction workers are still at its lowest level in over eight years despite being given the go-ahead to resume work. The industry has lost 33,982 jobs over a 14 week period.  Interest in this sector has also fallen amid risks of social distancing on construction sites. Searches for ‘construction jobs’ have fallen by 40% from January to April to just 1,900.

Online searches for popular jobs such as Site managers, Construction managers have also fallen significantly as the industry struggles to recover. The news that construction workers are eligible for coronavirus testing in April seems to have done little to encourage workers back into this industry.

Retail (-70.2%)

Online searches last month – 9,900

Open vacancies in the UK – 5,843

Interest in retail positions outweighs the number of opportunities available in the UK, with almost 10,000 monthly searches for ‘retail jobs’ compared with 5,843 jobs available. Retail continues to be one of the hardest-hit industries after enforced lock-down in March. This follows the news DIY giant Kingfisher’s sales have fallen 14.7% to £1.09bn and B&Q sales have fallen 22.1% to £663m in April. 

Engineering jobs (-71.7%)

Online searches last month – 6,600

Open vacancies in the UK – 22,077

Despite a 71.7% reduction in live vacancies, there are still 22,077 engineering jobs available in the UK. Interest in this industry has almost halved since January with searches for ‘engineering jobs’ falling by 12,100 to 6,600.  The drop in job seeker demand corresponds with the fall in vacancies as engineering jobs fall week on week. The global outlook for engineering jobs is less harsh with a 19.8% drop in 12 weeks.

*Data correct as of 20th May 2020. Countries included in the data are the UK, USA, Russia, New Zealand, Canada, Australia, Singapore, South Africa, Italy, India, Netherlands, Poland, France, Germany, Brazil and Austria. 

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