Plant & Works Engineering

Manufacturers report record high

Published:  18 June, 2014

Recruitment confidence amongst London and SE manufacturers has hit a three-year high according to the latest (January-March) Barometer Survey by the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS). The regular quarterly survey is the largest of its kind, sharing the views of over 800 small to medium (SME) manufacturers across England.

In the South East and London region, more than half of business surveyed (55%) are looking to create new jobs, marking a 17% increase on the same period last year. This is the highest level of confidence in staff recruitment seen in the history of the report.

These encouraging figures are reinforced by growth in sales in the region – 66% of firms reported an increase in the previous six months and 79% expect to win more work between now and October – a 19% and 18% rise respectively from March 2013.

Responses also reveal a record appetite for investment in new plant and machinery (59%) and in developing new technologies (51%).

Chris Needham, operations manager for MAS in the South East and London, says he is delighted with the positive messages coming out of the Barometer. He said: “It’s fantastic to see confidence continuing to build in the region. Across a multitude of sectors, the businesses that MAS helps all recognise the need to build for the future - and the rise in sales and employment reflects that trend. This survey is a great indicator of the many success stories within our manufacturing economy.”