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Latest job losses figures (to April 2010) available
The job-market in commercial archaeology remains volatile. There was a small increase in the number of individuals in work in the three months ending 31 March 2010, but this followed a decline in the previous quarter.

It is estimated that there was a total of 6233 individuals in UK archaeological employment on 1 April 2010. In August 2007, the total was 6865, and so archaeology as a whole is now 9% smaller than it was at that time. 3404 of the individuals in work on 1 April 2010 were working in commercial archaeology, a drop of 15.7% from the August 2007 peak of 4036.

Business confidence fell in April 2010, with companies feeling less confident in their capabilities to retain staff in the forthcoming quarter than they were three months before and markedly less positive about the outlook for the next year. Companies continue to lose fieldworker skills.

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If we put aside the 2007 high (which to be honest was an unsustainable high) then these figures are in fact encouraging. Business confidence did indeed fall in April, and was in part due to the lack of confidence in what would come out of the election in May. What I have been hearing recently, is a levelling - where companies have in general full books, but no more... there is a point where demand and supply are equally balanced. This often means no 'new' jobs and a reliance on contacting people that had previously been 'let go' and so in may not be seen easily in the adverts carried, however, adverts for digging staff are there. The more worrying aspect for us is the potential to see curatorial archaeology placed on an endangered list. AND the potential knock-on if the capital projects are reduced or cancelled.

What are peoples thoughts? Are we burying heads in sand? or are we facing up to the realities?
August 2007, the total was 6865 - 4036 working in commercial archaeology =2829
1 April 2010, the total was 6233 - 3404 working in commercial archaeology =2829
As of next week, you can add me to the list Sad
Unitof1 Wrote:August 2007, the total was 6865 - 4036 working in commercial archaeology =2829
1 April 2010, the total was 6233 - 3404 working in commercial archaeology =2829

So non-commercial posts not so endangered?

Also, don't jobs usually decline through the tail-end of the year (as rural construction projects like pipelines wind-up before bad weather) and pick up a bit towards the end of the first quarter as clients try to use budgets before the end of the tax year (that's what always happens here)? So no obvious recession-related pattern there....
sorry just be out to stare at a pointless service hole

So non-commercial posts not so endangered?

6865 6735 6388 6152 6301 6355 6145 6233
4036 3906 3559 3323 3472 3526 3316 3404

2829 2829 2829 2829 2829 2829 2829 2829

2829 does seem to be a magic number no matter what month or year. Who are they, they dont do commercial but are who are they. Are they members of the Opus Dei. Its a good thing that they can be counted isnt it?
Good Lord, I do believe Unit has made an interesting point.
Surely depends on what you think the 2829 represents.....core staff immune to commercial pressures, curatorial or government/local government jobs funded through direct grant, non-commercial archaeologists, academic staff, part timers, students with some corefunding....A football teamhas 11 players, doesn't mean the same 11 turn out every week....
With peace and consolation hath dismist, And calm of mind all passion spent...
I'm afraid it's nothing as interesting as the Opus Dei. This survey (unlike the Profiling the Profession survey from which the August 2007 figures are obtained) only surveys the commercial sector. There are no figures from this survey or any previous job losses survey for the non-commercial sector, 2829 is the figure that represented the non-commercial sector in August 2007 and has remained throughout these reports.
I suspect that it is the same 2829 turnout every week kev-for probably the last ten years

Thing is are they also queering the questionnaire as well. I would presume that their business confidence will be somewhat opinionated. Their anticipation of further losses –something to worry about except they cant answer the question as they have not had any previous job losses makes them exempt from anticipating “further” losses as they have not had any.

And then theres their opinion on skills losses

Skills continue to be lost across almost all professional activities, but as in previous quarters it is the skills that are needed to conduct and contribute to intrusive, excavation projects which are being most notably lost – which repeats the pattern reported in the four previous surveys (January 2010 and April, July and October 2009).

Which are the skills skill areas used in Aitchison & Edwards 2008 where they the 2829 felt that their organisation had lost skills during the present crisis?

The ifa is saying that it views the profession as currently 3404 us and 2829 them or currently there is about 55% of us and 45% of them. We can also see that the ifa likes to incorporate their opinions in this profession on matters concerning commercial archaeology. We should also remember that commercial archaeologist are predominantly not members of the ifa and we don’t have pensions and we don’t get our membership paid and we have dirty finger nails and that the term contract is either something to worry about in a court case or its very short.

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