Sussex workers see salaries drop despite rising inflation as living and energy costs soar

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New research has revealed that despite the increase in interest rates, the cost of living and energy prices, salaries in Sussex (and the South East) are not keeping up, with companies advertising lower salaries across the UK.

From analysis of more than 9.35 million jobs posted on Reed.co.uk across the UK since 2018, as part of Reed’s suite of annual salary guides, advertised salaries are sitting at pre-pandemic levels, with any rise over the past two years dropping back down to 2020 levels. Salaries in the South East are no exception, as they lag behind soaring living costs, much like the UK average.

Despite talk about ‘The Great Resignation’, Reed’s salary guides and research shows that this has become more of a ‘Great Flirtation’, with businesses in an ongoing fight to attract talent, a lack of available jobseekers in the market, and the perceived risk of changing roles during economic flux.

The annual salary guides also found salaries in the South East varying between sectors, with some like procurement and supply chain experiencing an increase of 9.2%, but others such as insurance and financial services seeing a decrease (-5.8%).

The fall in average advertised salaries is worrying news, particularly in the context of soaring inflation, with the Consumer Price Index at 5.5%, it shows that the financial effects of the pandemic are evident in salaries.

Amanda Hall, Reed’s Regional Managing Director for the South East, said: “Like many other parts of the country, the South East as been devastated by the economic effects of the past two years, which is reflected in salaries dropping compared with last year.

“However some sectors, such as procurement and supply chain, have seen a significant growth in salaries - showing its vital contribution to the economy as companies revamp their supply chains in response to the pandemic and Brexit.

“Businesses looking to recruit right now are facing unique challenges in a candidate-driven market, which is likely why we’re seeing variations in salary increases across sectors as companies try to fill their most pressing vacancies.

“It’s critical now that businesses review their salary and benefits offering if they’re looking to attract the talent they need and stand out in such a competitive market.”

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