Despite continued fears and reports of a looming recession and persistent inflation, global hiring demand is expected to remain strong in the first quarter. This data is from the newest ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey. The Net Employment Outlook, which is measured by subtracting the percentage of employers who expect headcount to shrink from the percentage of employers who plan to hire, still stands at a solid +23%. This is lower on both a quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year basis but still reflects that a plurality of employers participating in this global survey do plan to hire in the next three months. In fact, of the 41 countries participating in the survey, 39 of them have positive hiring outlooks. Only Poland and Hungary anticipate a decline in payroll in this quarter.
Other noteworthy items from the survey:
- The net employment outlook is highest in North America (+31%), buoyed by strong reports in Panama, Costa Rica, and Canada
- The IT sector reports the strongest hiring outlook at +35%, followed by financials and real estate at +28% and energy/utilities at +26%
- Twice as many large employers (>250 employees) expect to add headcount this quarter compared to micro employers (<10 employees)
- Employers in Singapore, Australia, and India report the strongest hiring demand in the AsiaPacific region
- A full three-quarters of employers in the wholesale and retail trade, financials and real estate, manufacturing, and IT sectors report difficulty finding needed skills
In addition to the existing hiring challenges—there are 1.9 job openings in the US for every worker, for example—more than 97 million new jobs are expected to be created through automation, while 5 million jobs are estimated to be lost. New technology consistently creates more jobs than it loses and that trend does not seem to be changing. The January jobs report (USA) clobbered expectations with the addition of 517,000 new jobs, with a huge boost in the leisure & hospitality sector (128,000 jobs). This is in spite of some clear softening in certain markets and sectors. Demographic trends point to a continued labor shortage for a number of years into the future as low birth rates mean there are not enough new workers to replace the 10,000 Baby Boomers who are retiring each day.
Employers will need to continue leveraging skilled recruitment partners who can find the right candidates *and* successfully woo them away from their existing employers. Employers will need to completely re-evaluate and, in many cases, restructure their employment offers to ensure they can attract and retain these hard-to-find candidates. This will likely involve a combination of wages, benefits, flexibility, training/development, and purpose-driven work.