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Jobcentre Plus: Vacancies

Volume 492: debated on Tuesday 12 May 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what his most recent estimate is of the ratio of jobseekers to vacancies in each (a) region, (b) local authority area, (c) Jobcentre Plus area and (d) parliamentary constituency. (262243)

The information has been placed in the Library, and provides separate data for unfilled and notified vacancies to give the fullest picture of the number of Jobcentre Plus vacancies. The labour market is dynamic and many new vacancies are filled so quickly they do not appear in the statistics for live unfilled vacancies, which are based on a snapshot of the vacancies available on a particular day.

The coverage of these figures relates only to Jobcentre Plus notified and unfilled vacancies. Many vacancies come up through other recruitment channels and the proportion accounted for by Jobcentre Plus is likely to vary over time, according to the occupation of the vacancy and industry of the employer, and by local area. Estimates of the number of unfilled job vacancies across the economy as a whole are available from the monthly ONS Vacancy Survey, based on a sample of some 6,000 enterprises. However, the ONS survey is currently designed to provide national estimates only.

It should be noted that a simple comparison of Jobcentre Plus advertised vacancies to local areas is not the best measure of the work opportunities available to jobseekers. People will tend to look for work in a wider geographical area than a parliamentary constituency.