Business leaders welcome seasonal jobs boom in Mansfield and Ashfield but say more needs to be done to create stable employment
Business leaders around Mansfield and Ashfield have welcomed a plethora of seasonal jobs as the districts’ town centres battle to recover from the financial impact of Covid-19.
Your Chad recently published a gallery of firms recruiting in the area in preparation to the run-up to Christmas – largely in the retail sector – although there is also a raft of vacancies in the hospitality industry.
Firms hiring seasonal staff include The Range, Smyths Toys, Primark, Card Factory, Clintons, Fossil, Boots, JD Sports, Sports Direct, Iceland, The Works, USC, Claire’s, Dunhelm and Tesco.
Meanwhile, Morrisons and Amazon in Sutton are also recruiting seasonal staff to help with the business rush.
Paul Williams, director of Mansfield BID, said: “Additional jobs in the retail sector are very much to be welcomed, as they are every year, in order to cope with demand. They also mean the local economy gets a boost too.
"We have a mix of independent and national chains in Mansfield town centre and it's important that we support them all the time and particularly now as we build toward the festive period.
"Mansfield BID, its partners, and businesses have worked together over a very challenging 18 months or so to ensure that Mansfield is a safe place to visit."
In the last month, employment has risen by 207,000 nationally and is now above pre-pandemic levels.
"The unemployment rate has fallen by 0.4 per cent and there are currently over 1.1 million job vacancies still available.
A government spokesman said they are prioritising getting people back into jobs to support the economic recovery from the difficulties that Covid has caused.
Through its Plan for Jobs, Westminster is aiming to support people into work by ensuring they have the skills they need to get into good, well-paying jobs.
Meanwhile, Scott Knowles, chief executive of East Midlands Chamber, also welcomed the news but warned that seasonal work does not help with wider issues in the local economy.
He said: “Seasonal work is popular with both employers that need to fill short-term vacancies for busy periods and with certain parts of the workforce, including students, people who are recently retired, parents with childcare duties and those looking for extra money.
“Given many of the industries that will be recruiting for these types of roles were badly hit by lockdown restrictions last Christmas – such as retail and hospitality – the creation of new temporary jobs will enable them to maximise opportunities afforded by the expected huge demand this year and provide a festive uplift to the economy.
“However, it should always be noted that these positions don’t fill much-needed gaps elsewhere.
“There is a major skills shortage across many industries, with our Quarterly Economic Survey for Q3 2021 showing that while two-thirds (67 per cent) of East Midlands companies attempted recruitment in the third quarter of the year, 71 per cent said they faced problems in filling roles.
“It’s important the Government is therefore ready to support businesses in upskilling our workforce and ensure people are equipped to take on permanent well-paid employment.”