Hays sees slowdown in UK hiring ahead of Brexit vote

British firms are likely to delay hiring decisions ahead of a referendum on EU membership, the head of recruitment firm Hays said, adding growth in other parts of the world should offset any weakness.

Chief executive Alistair Cox said he was mindful of the effects that Britain’s June 23 referendum would have on his clients but Hays maintained a positive outlook after it posted an 8% rise in underlying net fees in the first half of its financial year.

The company, which places workers in areas such as finance, construction and IT, said it had seen strong growth from regions like continental Europe and the rest of the world, though Britain and Australia slowed by the end of 2015.

The cautious note weighed on Hays’ shares which fell 6% at one stage yesterday and are down 20% this year. “There is uncertainty around the world, every time there’s any election there will be a period where clients and candidates step back and slow down their decision making,” said Mr Cox. “We saw it with the Scottish referendum, we saw it with the (UK) general election, and I’m sure we will see it with an EU referendum,” he said.

Group net fees rose to £397m (€507.8m) for the six months to the end of December, an 8% rise on a like-for-like basis. The UK and Ireland posted net fee growth of 3%.

* Reuters


Lifestyle

This season textiles trend large, full of colour and exotic pattern, and applied in new ways to make a personal design statement from the living room to the bedroom, writes Carol O’CallaghanTextile trends that can help you make a personal design statement

If you haven’t heard of facial oils or thought they weren’t for you, please, please, please don’t be cross with me for introducing you.The Skin Nerd: Slippery skin? Facial oil could be for you, I swear!

“If you look at the turmoil in the world today, whether it’s climate change, the MeToo movement or Black Lives Matter, there is so much to say that you wonder where to begin,” says iconic British artist, ChilaKumari Singh Burman.Creative culture clash

In some parts of Ireland, the word ‘deadly’ means excellent. We couldn’t have known how good Deadly Premonition was going to be. In fact, no one had this premonition back in 2010GameTech: One of the oddest games ever

More From The Irish Examiner