COVID-19 Bulletin #4

Apr 15, 2020 | Sector & policy

This is the fourth of a series of bulletins produced by ISE to update members on key data and policy on Covid-19. This bulletin just covers the period 09/04/2020-15/04/2020.

You can access all of the Covid-19 bulletins on the ISE website.

Data taken from Wikipedia.

Detailed commentary on the number of deaths published by the Office for National Statistics. The data suggests that the number of deaths is 15% higher than in previous years.


Politics, policy and government





The Office for Budget Responsibility predict a 35% fall in UK GDP.
A recession now looks certain following Covid-19. The question is what shape this recession is going to be. Economists from the International Institute for Management Development and the University of Zurich predict that it will be wheelbarrow shaped (a long recession with a slow recovery).
The government has created a new business support hub to help businesses during the crisis. The CBI have also created a coronavirus hub offering information and resources for businesses.


Labour market

  • The number of new jobs advertised continues to drop. Sales and customer service occupations are worst hit.


The student labour market

Data taken from the ISE supplier survey.


Recruiting during Covid-19


Employer insights

The following insights are based on ISE’s interactions with employers during the period covered by this briefing.

  • Recruitment. Recruitment processes are increasingly moving online.
  • Placement students. Firms report some problems in dealing with the end of year long placement students. In some cases these students have been placed on furlough and employers are having to agree new processes with their university partners to ensure that this does not cause problems for the students on their current degree programme.
  • Interns. Some firm’s are cancelling summer internships. Others are starting interns virtually in the hope that they might be able to return to their offices during the summer. Still others are offering a reduced (virtual) experience for their interns rather than a full internship.
  • Graduates completing programmes. Concerns about the wider market for their services is leading some organisations to struggle to find places for all of the graduates who are completing their programmes. In some graduate programmes hires are only placed in the business at the end of their programme and sometimes even need to formally apply for roles. This creates another pinch point for the employment of early career hires. In some cases employers are extending graduates initial contract while the business considers how to manage this situation.
  • Reputation. The need to cancel, reduce and change recruitment raises a range of reputational issues for employers. Employers are actively managing the relationships that they have with students who may be disappointed or find that their start dates are subject to change.
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