Full-time employees rose by 30,000 to 18.4 million, said the Office for National Statistics. The South West has the highest number of part-time workers, at 37% of the total.
The biggest fall in employment levels between 2011 and 2012 was in Scotland -down by 34,000 to 2.3 million - although Yorkshire and the Humber, East Midlands, the South West and the North East also had fewer people in employment over the 12 months.
London saw an increase of 143,000 employees and there were smaller rises in the South East, West Midlands, East of England, North West and Wales.
The health sector has the biggest number of workers at 3.7 million, while agriculture, forestry and fishing has the smallest at 200,000, the figures showed. The biggest fall in employment was in public administration.