How are Contractor vacancies trending as we move into 2024?

The latest data from Outside Spy shows that the number of advertised IT contracts “Outside IR35” fell of quite sharply towards the end of the year.

Numbers of advertised contracts usually fall off in December, as thoughts turn more to the New Year for hirers and contractors alike, but 2023 saw a more abrupt fall off in advertised vacancies than normal.


Last year witnessed a slight decline in contract numbers across the year, with the peak number being reached in mid January.

"We've witnessed a slow but steady decline in contract numbers advertised as Outside IR35 since the start the year" explained Outside Spy co-founder Brian Stalley. "As far as our data shows, the proportion of contracts advertised as Outside IR35 remains fairly steady, but overall numbers of contracts have been slowly declining over the last 11 months or so. We attribute this fall off to the wider economic picture which suggests a slowdown or recession is underway, rather than any specific factors which might impact on a hirer's decision to use contract staff".

So the big question is how will Contractors fare in 2024, and will the decline in advertised contracts continue? The first quarter will reveal whether or not this downward trend has bottomed out, so Outside Spy will be reviewing the numbers again at the end of March.

In the meantime, Outside Spy wishes all its members and the wider IT Contractor Community a Happy and Prosperous 2024. 

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