As so often, major economic trends in the labour market can be observed upstream, and in particular on Google.

Recent data shows the volume of searches for the terms Redundancy and Redundancy Payment are up 40% on last year.

Google Search Volume for the term "Redundancy"

This is despite the fact that actual government data shows a small reduction in redundancy levels over the same time last year. 

Clearly, the prevailing atmosphere, as Britain tips into recession, is one of mounting fear for the future, especially at the level of the individual breadwinner.

While most businesses have been reluctant to reduce headcount just yet,’ comments insolvency practitioner Alan Bradstock, ‘that is likely to change considerably as we head into 2023. History tells us that recession plus double-digit inflation will mean large scale redundancies. The Bank of England has already warned unemployment could rise to around 6.5% if the recession is as long and deep as it’s feared it could be.

More Employers Planning to make Redundancies Next Year

A recent report by CIPD and KPMG predicts spiking redundancies from UK employers, with 26 % of them having contingency plans to make further redundancies within 12 months.

If this percentage is still low, its growing rate is a striking illustration of the cost-of-living and energy crisis, plus record inflation hitting uk businesses, especially SMEs.

Employers planning to make redundancies

A Decreasing Confidence in the UK Labour Market

Data by ICAEW shows employer confidence has dramatically decreased all year and is reaching levels observed in the thick of the pandemic.

So, how will this trust deficit translate on the labour market? Well, without any surprise, in rising redundancy intentions from employers.

Business confidence levels are plummeting