Matt Gascoigne, executive director, HR, Badenoch & Clark, said: "Last year saw a growth in learning and development and change management roles - investment in people was seen as key to growth during economic uncertainty.
"HR generalists with strong commercial skills were in demand, allowing for streamlining of HR roles.
"From HR managers to HR business partners, the HR role became more strategic as business requirements evolved.
"Technology companies are increasingly seizing the opportunity to satisfy consumer convenience and entertainment as well as business' appetite for driving efficiencies. As a result it is anticipated that newer or start up technology businesses will be best placed to capitalise and this could drive fresh demand for HR professionals.
"With businesses running so leanly at the moment, we anticipate that, as new budgets get released, there will be rising levels in recruitment. Specialist areas of the progressive agenda such as talent, leadership development, organisational learning and development and resourcing are expected to be in demand going into the second half of 2012 as a result.
"As both established companies and new ventures offering B2B services or real expertise continue to explore international markets we expect opportunities to be created for internationally experienced HR professionals. This could also lead to more buoyancy in the job market at HR director level where hiring is focussed on bringing in those with strategic clout and a long term view."
The report showed permanent salaries for HR professionals were up 1.72% year on year and permanent vacancies up 0.52% from November 2012 to 1,937.
Head of recruitment salary rose the most in ?2011, up 3.63% year on year to £57,557.
Gascoigne added: "With HR becoming more strategic and having been streamlined during 2011, we expect the progressive agenda, international markets and growth sectors such as technology to be the driving force for HR recruitment in 2012."
The trends described in the Talent Spotlight are based on insight from Badenoch & Clark's industry experts. The market data, is drawn together using market intelligence from job boards, data from all brands within the Adecco Group UK & Ireland, company websites, social networking sites, SalaryTrack, the earnings information service and mysalarychecker.com.