JCB has launched a new UK recruitment drive for hundreds more shop floor employees and announced plans to give more agency personnel permanent contracts, as it says demand for construction equipment continues to rebound.

Last month the company revealed it was hiring more than 400 UK shop floor agency staff and giving permanent JCB contracts from 1 April to more than 300 existing agency employees.

Today (17 March) JCB unveiled it was recruiting a further 450 agency shop floor employees at its factories in Staffordshire, Derbyshire and Wrexham; later this year it will give an additional 400 agency shop floor employees with more than one year’s service permanent JCB contracts. These will include assemblers, welders, fabricators and CNC machinists.

“The rebound following the COVID-19 pandemic continues to gather pace and even in the space of a month since we started recruiting, we now need a further 450 shop floor employees,” said JCB COO, Mark Turner. “The creation of a total of 850 jobs this year is very good news for our business and for the areas where we operate.”

“It’s also great news that this year we will give permanent JCB contracts to more than 700 agency employees, starting this month.”

The manufacturer notes the market for construction equipment has rebounded sharply after the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in spring, 2020, which halted production at JCB factories around the world.

In March, 2020, JCB’s orders “disappeared overnight” when the pandemic took hold. While no shop floor jobs were lost, many staff positions were impacted and it took more than six months for the business to recover to production levels last seen in March, 2020.

Forecasts predict a continued recovery, with strong demand from mainland Europe and North America.