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A new survey of hiring trends covering businesses in 14 countries around the world has uncovered a generally positive picture of the employment market for managers and professionals despite the effects of the ‘credit crunch’ and higher energy, fuel and food prices.

The ‘Global Snapshot’ from the international recruitment firm, Antal, asked over 1500 major companies in both western and eastern Europe, Africa, India and China whether they were currently hiring at professional and managerial level. It then asked whether they planned to do so in the coming quarter and also whether they were currently letting staff go or were planning to do so in the next three months.

In Germany 57% of companies were hiring now and 64% expected to do so in the next quarter, whilst in Italy over 70% were currently recruiting and expected to do so in the coming three months. In Spain, however, the picture was less positive. Although 63% of Spanish businesses questioned were currently hiring, the deteriorating economy and a slowing of growth in GDP seem set to bite into the managerial/professional employment market next quarter with the hiring figure dropping to 50%.

In the UK the survey helped to give credence to the perception that a downturn in economic activity is feeding into the demand for managerial and professional staff – only 31% of employers were recruiting at the moment. However the poll did produce two key findings which qualify this generally gloomy picture. First, employers do appear relatively optimistic about the future and are consequently expecting to ramp up their hiring plans as the year progresses – 48% expected to hire next quarter. Secondly, the hiring and firing picture is by no means a uniform one. Whilst the construction and property sectors and certain parts of the financial services industry are suffering a real crisis of confidence, organisations in other areas such as telecoms and technology are generally positive about hiring.

In Eastern Europe the hiring market appears to be an extremely positive one. In Poland 93% of businesses were actively hiring at managerial and professional level, in Bulgaria, 89% and in Hungary 74%. The picture was a similar one in the more developed economies of Africa – in Egypt 86% of businesses were hiring and in South Africa 84%.

In India hiring levels are particularly high – as much as 100% in the building material sector, 95% in real estate and 82% in FMCG. Only the banking sector had reduced its demand for staff – only 30% of financial institutions questioned were recruiting now although 60% expected to next quarter. The situation was similar in China. 90% of IT companies were currently recruiting and 96% of engineering businesses. Whilst the jobs market for managers and professionals in China is booming it is also clear that, at least for the moment, the workplace is no environment for the faint-hearted or uncommitted - many companies shedding almost as many employees as they take on.

“Despite the doom and gloom of major political, banking and commercial figures in the US and the UK and a glut of credit crunch stories in domestic and international media, this survey does suggest that the jobs market for managers and professionals, at least outside the USA, is still in very good health,” says Antal International’s CEO, Tony Goodwin. “In fact demand in some regions is far exceeding supply. In such an environment it may be a complacency about the on-going ‘war for talent’ that ends up causing the most damage to organisations around the world, not any global economic downturn.”

(A free copy of the full survey document is available from Adrian Barrett at adrian@bluesky-pr.net)

Notes

About Antal International

Founded in 1993, Antal International is a management and professional recruitment specialist with a particular focus on the sourcing and retention of candidates in the ‘Generation Y’ bracket. One of the first recruitment organisations to devote substantial resources to emerging markets, the company now has 46 offices in 24 countries and works with many of the world’s most successful and ambitious multi-nationals.

Sam Woodward
BlueSky PR
0845 130 8290
sam@bluesky-pr.net
www.bluesky-pr.net

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