Recruitment gets harder, a bad week for UK property, Google's self-driving cars reach the UK

As employment figures rise companies are having to do more to remain attractive, and other non-election stories you may have missed this week.

by Stephen Jones
Last Updated: 13 Dec 2019

Recruiting power has shifted to the candidate

The proportion of the population in paid employment was 76 per cent in the third quarter of 2019, and the dearth of available talent means that companies are having to do more to retain and attract candidates, reports the FT.

A study by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation found that 75 per cent of UK employers say they have little or no surplus workforce capacity; as many as 34 per cent have none at all. 

Some bosses say that this has shifted the ‘power’ to the candidate and as a result they’re having to work harder to remain attractive by investing in training new starters or extending searches to candidates beyond those with immediate experience. Other methods of filling the void involving boosting salaries, raising brand awareness or retraining existing staff. 

(Source: The FT)

A bad week for UK property

UK property funds have had their ‘worst week since the Brexit referendum’ after an estimated £193m was withdrawn in the last week, reports the Guardian. 

The dash was spurred when M&G, which has a shopping-centre-heavy portfolio, banned redemptions last week after nearly £176m was withdrawn. The fund has blamed the knock-on effect of Brexit and the retail downturn for its struggles. 

A general exposure to brick-and-mortar retail has led to other funds being affected. Aberdeen Standard - one of the UK’s largest, worth an estimated £1.3bn - lost £70m. 

(Source: The Guardian)

Google’s AI car project reaches the UK

Waymo, Alphabet’s self driving car subsidiary has acquired Oxford University spin-out Latent Logic as part of plans to build a presence outside Silicon Valley. 

The acquisition is thought to be research based for the time being. Latent Logic specialises in imitation learning and it’s hoped that the technology will help Waymo’s AI drivers - which currently only operate in Phoenix, Arizona - cope with complex behaviour on the roads. 

European expansion isn’t off the cards however, as Waymo is working with Renault to develop a self-driving cab service for the 2024 Paris Olympics.  

(Source: The Guardian)

 

Image credit: Matt Cardy / Stringer

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