The Q1 2021 edition of Manpower Group’s Employment Outlook has been released. Employers in 34 of the 43 surveyed countries expect payroll increases in the upcoming quarter. The hiring outlook is stronger on a quarter-over-quarter basis in 32 of those countries, while weaker on a year-over-year basis in 33 locations. This is in line with the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19 and the gradual return to a stronger marketplace. Here are some highlights from each of the geographic areas studied as part of the survey: Read the rest of this entry »
Global recruiters continue to adapt to the ever-shifting employment landscape. A recent report by Evenbase summarizes some of the most interesting countries to watch through the year 2020. The report includes data on GDP but also looks at factors not traditionally considered, such as the regulatory environment, language, and cultural factors. The full report is worth reading; here are some of points I found most salient:
- The BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, China, India) are often reported as the hottest emerging economies. While Evenbase lists Brazil, India, and China as the top 3 hottest markets, they have Russia pegged at number 9, partly due to continuing political and economic uncertainty. Global recruiters may also find opportunities in Australia, Japan, and Canada among others.
- China’s recruitment industry is still in its infancy. Language barriers are significant, and the regulatory environment is also difficult. Enterprising global recruiters would do well to investigate partnerships in order to penetrate this market. One thing to consider is working on a split-fee basis with recruitment partners who are already operating in China.
- Japan has more than three times the number of employment agency branches than its nearest competitor (83,000 vs 26,000 in the US).
- Only 1.1% of the total workforce in Brazil is currently hired via a recruiting agency. Additionally, Brazil is also one of the countries where jobs are hardest to fill – 71% of employers report having trouble finding qualified candidates compared to 34% globally. These two facts should indicate a ripe market for global recruiters.
- China’s workforce is aging, with 1/3 expected to retire in the next 20 years.
- In India, job boards are responsible for 50% more hires than either recruitment agencies, direct hires, or word-of-mouth referrals.
- Smartphones also impact global recruiters. Australia has the second-highest smartphone penetration (behind Singapore) and use a lot of apps, but social media adoption for recruitment is much slower than in other markets.
- In the US, almost 1/3 of recruiters report that social networks are a major source of hires, but this number is much lower in other countries. Younger workers (25-34) are most likely to be using smartphones and represent a big target for global recruiters who are digitally-savvy.
Global recruiters who adopt digital platforms, social networks, and capitalize on smartphone technologies, will find plenty of hiring opportunities over the next decade and beyond.
NPA members recently gathered in Beijing, China for a Global Owners Meeting. Part of the agenda was devoted to learning and discussing international recruiting needs throughout Asia. Thank you to NPA members Stan Tan from PHR Executive Search and Alban d’Sa from Gemini Personnel Pte Limited for sharing their knowledge of the Singaporean economy.
Singapore has been rated as #1 in Asia for quality of life, with the 3rd most globalized economy among 60 of the world’s economies. It is also rated as the most politically stable country in Asia. The World Bank has named Singapore #1 in the world for ease of doing business, for the seventh year in a row. Current market conditions include slowdowns in the banking and technology sectors.
Some other economic highlights:
- Employment creation moderated in the third quarter of 2012, after increasing in the previous quarter. Preliminary estimates show that total employment grew by 24,900 in the third quarter of 2012, down from the increase of 31,900 in the same period last year and 31,700 in the second quarter of 2012. International recruiting opportunities still exist, though slightly lower from earlier in the year.
- The growth in employment slowed in services from 21,200 in the third quarter of 2011 to 11,300 in the third quarter of 2012 and manufacturing from 3,900 to 3,700. Boosted by public infrastructure projects, construction continued to register strong employment increase of 9,800 in the third quarter of 2012, up from 6,700 in the same quarter last year.
- Layoffs rose after declining in the preceding two quarters. An estimated 3,300 workers were made redundant in the third quarter of 2012, mainly driven by higher layoffs in electronics manufacturing and retail. This was one of the few higher quarterly redundancy figures reported in post-recessionary periods, though it was substantially lower than the highs of 6,000 to 12,800 per quarter registered during the last recession.
- Unemployment rates remained low, reflecting strong manpower demand amid the tightening in foreign manpower controls. The seasonally adjusted overall unemployment rate dipped marginally to 1.9% in September 2012 from 2.0% a quarter ago, while the unemployment rates for residents and Singapore citizens were unchanged at 2.8% and 3.0% respectively.
While layoffs have increased somewhat, the continued low unemployment rate in Singapore means employers continue to have international recruiting needs. Recruiters with global partnerships are well-poised to meet this demand.
Today’s guest blogger is Geoff Crews with Forsythes Recruitment in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia. Forsythes Recruitment specializes in engineering and technical recruitment; corporate recruitment, including executive, sales, HR, and finance; office support recruitment including admin, accounts, and clerical; trade and industrial recruitment; and organizational consulting including psychometric assessment, outplacement, and OD. Geoff serves on NPA’s Board of Directors where he is a member of the Tools, Knowledge, and Services Committee.
Skype, social media and news relayed via journalists are good mediums. But there’s nothing like being in a room with employers and global recruiting agency owners to share opinions and ask questions about employment outside Australia.
It’s now Sunday night in Beijing and most of the 46 attendees and speakers are on a plane heading home. I’m staying an extra day before heading to Shanghai tomorrow to visit some of our global recruiting partners there.
This was a successful NPA Global Owners Meeting: 15 attendees from China, 12 from Australia, 9 from the US & Canada, 3 from Singapore, 2 from Indonesia, 2 from the Philippines, and 1 each from Korea, Taiwan and Ireland. Everyone contributed and left richer for the experience together.
Asian members represent only 17% of the membership of NPA, The Worldwide Recruiting Network, but are responsible for 33% of successful cross-border recruitment projects. This outward perspective is important to China’s desired transition from an industrial economy to a knowledge economy. And it was highlighted in our meeting in a presentation by CAIEP – the China Association for the International Exchange of Personnel. This speech, via a translator, was a rare window into the strategic thinking on China’s labour costs, manufacturing efficiencies and balanced development across primary, secondary and tertiary industries. The need for high-level creative talent from foreigners was a point emphasized on more than one occasion.
A Q&A session with Chinese HR Managers – one from a marketing/event management agency and the other from a very large, complex manufacturing company – reiterated the need for global thinking in recruiting key staff. As in-house recruitment professionals, these representatives discussed the balance between competition and cooperation with agency recruiters on junior and middle level recruitment projects. But they emphasized the need to partner with global recruiting experts capable of accessing an international candidate pool for leadership and strategic staff requirements.
The time together included country presentations from ten of the attendees. These presentations included details from basic GDP, population and employment figures to the personal experiences of each in sourcing and screening candidates in a range of classifications, industries and cultures. Countries like China, Korea, Singapore, the US and Australia reported softer employment activity in some sectors and a cautious global recruiting outlook. Other regions like Indonesia and the Philippines outlined a national sentiment of confidence and growth.
I am an employer. My expertise includes thinking like a job seeker. Whichever way I look at it, I believe our exposure to these neighbouring Asian markets is important and I am grateful for this time I have spent with old friends and new this past few days.