Fruit picking and proofreading among the most popular job searches in lockdown

Lifestyle

The coronavirus pandemic has been devastating on employment, as many have faced redundancies, put on the government’s furlough scheme or been ineligible for it and left to apply for Universal Credit.

Latest figures show that around a quarter of the UK’s workforce has been placed on the government’s job retention scheme, although it’s estimated that almost seven million jobs could be lost in the coming months.

With most industries facing cuts and downsizing of some sort, many people have had to start looking for jobs elsewhere.

In lockdown, certain professions such as supermarket work seem to be in popular demand, as well as the overstretched NHS.

New research shows these two fields are among some of the most searched jobs during the country’s shutdown.

Data from careers website Debut Careers has revealed the jobs and companies which have seen the biggest increase in searches since the UK entered lockdown.

Among NHS roles and supermarket jobs, proofreading, fruit-picking, and postman jobs were also popular.

Top job searches during lockdown
Search Term

Fruit picking jobs – 843% increase
NHS volunteer jobs – 355% increase
Online tutoring jobs – 67% increase
Royal Mail jobs – 48% increase
Delivery jobs – 40% increase
Supermarket jobs – 30% increase
Proofreading jobs – 27% increase
Farm jobs – 21% increase
Pick packer – 20% increase
Freelance writing – 17% increase
The job that has seen the biggest increase in searches is fruit picking, with searches up over 800% compared to the weeks before the lockdown.

Those who have been furloughed were actively encouraged to take up fruit picking work on the UK’s farms, with many migrant workers who usually come over to the UK to carry out this work unable to do so.

Another hugely popular choice amongst those who have been furloughed is to volunteer to support the NHS.

Over three-quarters of a million people answered the Government’s call to join the volunteer army and help to deliver food and medicine, drive patients to appointments and phone those who are isolating earlier in the year.

With schools shut, online tutoring searches have also soared in lockdown.

As well as parents wanting help for their kids, some adults have also been taking the time in quarantine to try and pick up some new skills such as a language.

The postmen and women of the nation are another key group who are helping to keep the country going, with searches for Royal Mail jobs increasing by 48% since lockdown.

All search increases were calculated using Google Trends data by the Debut Careers team.

The team took an average for the search interest scores since lockdown (23 March to 15 May) and an average for the same period pre-lockdown (29 January to 22 March), before calculating the percentage increase.