TN Recruits, which finds jobseekers employment in Tunbridge Wells and the surrounding area, says it is seeing its busiest period in the firm’s 17-year history.
Last week, the Times reported on the largest drop in unemployment rates in the Borough since the pandemic began.
Currently, 2,590 people are unemployed in Tunbridge Wells, according to June figures supplied by the ONS [Office for National Statistics].
That is 230 fewer people claiming out of work benefits than the month before [2,890] – the largest drop since unemployment rocketed last year when the pandemic struck.
The crisis has seen jobless figures surge from around 1,000 before the crisis began to a peak of 3,315 in May last year.
The successive easing of restrictions over the last few months has seen the number of job vacancies in the area rocket.
Neil Simmons, who runs Tunbridge Wells employment agency TN Recruits, said employment figures in and around Tunbridge Wells are reflective of what’s happening across the country.
He said: “From our perspective, June was TN Recruits’ most successful month in our history (since 2014), and it looks as though July will outperform June. We are pinching ourselves as this time last year we had our worst month on record.”
However, he warned local businesses they may have to up salaries to remain competitive, as ONS figures have also revealed that wages in Tunbridge Wells are lower than the national average.
Mr Simmons said: “Tunbridge Wells salaries have needed a shake up for a long time and the pandemic will instigate this, in my opinion.
“The draw of opportunities to work in London has always been the inflated salaries along with opportunity to work for large organisations.
“The downside of working in London has always been the commute and lack of work/life balance.
“With more companies offering hybrid working solutions, part home, part office, it’s my belief that local companies will need to compete with London salaries in order to attract the best talent.
“Having said that, it’s not just about salary at the moment – the added value candidates we are meeting tend to look for are things like training and development opportunities to progress their career, and for working parents a level of flexibility is required.
“There are a number of amazing companies in and around Tunbridge Wells, and more and more are recognising what they need to do to make the package attractive with both salary and benefits.”