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Global employment survey of 20,000 companies shows levelling out in market for professionals and managers


Job markets for professionals and managers around the world appear to be relatively stable, according to recruiter Antal International’s survey of over 20,000 organisations in 50 countries.

The 'Global Snapshot' project asked 20,546 companies in markets such as western and eastern Europe, Africa, India, China and the USA whether they were currently hiring at professional and managerial level.

It then asked whether they planned to do so in the coming quarter and whether they were currently letting staff go or were planning to do so in the next three months.

Hiring levels across the globe were down slightly with 51% of respondents recruiting at professional and managerial level in comparison to 55% in the last survey in April. Just under half (49%) of organisations questioned intended to hire in the coming quarter.

But the overall rate of attrition has dropped from 20% in April to 18% now and this is expected to fall again to just 16% over the next three months.

The highest levels of hiring were found in Iceland (94%), Denmark (75%) and Ireland (63%), while the lowest were recorded in Germany where only 27% of companies questioned were in the process of recruiting at professional or managerial level. In the UK the percentage of businesses recruiting was up from 45% in April to 49% now and is expected to drop by just 1% over the coming quarter. Despite that fact that Western Europe has been a long-term casualty of the financial meltdown of 2008, almost all of the countries surveyed in the region indicated at least some rise in hiring activity at professional and managerial level, even the Eurozone's most high profile victims of the downturn, Spain and Greece.

The highest levels of recruitment in Eastern Europe and Eurasia were found in Israel (80%), Russia (68%) and Bulgaria (63%). The lowest was recorded in Hungary (24%).

In the Middle East, employment markets were relatively strong. The weakest, in UAE, registering a respectable 54% hiring rate, up from 49% in April. The highest levels of recruitment were found in Qatar (76%) and Saudi Arabia (73%).

In the Africa's most high profile economy, South Africa, hiring levels were down from 53% in December to 50% now, but this figure is expected to rise to 57% over the next three months.

Pakistan recorded the highest level of recruitment activity in Asia Pacific with 75% of organisations currently hiring, followed by Taiwan with 70%. Activity in China had remained constant since the last survey in April at 72% and this was expected to continue into the coming quarter. In India the percentage of organisations increasing headcount had also remained constant at 55%, but this was due to a rise marginally to 56% in the next three months.

Canada registered the strongest performance in North America with 73% of businesses currently seeking staff, while the figure for US employers was 66%, up from 48% in April. In Latin America the most buoyant hiring market was in Mexico where 74% of businesses were hiring at professional and managerial level.

Antal's CEO Tony Goodwin said: "In our view the results of the latest Snapshot research does not suggest either any significant improvement or worsening of the global economic picture.

"Instead, we would suggest this indicates that many organisations have now come to accept uncertainty as an unwelcome, but inherent part of business life and are consequently pushing ahead with investment and development in this 'new normal'. As a consequence, while McKinsey & Co's notorious 'war for talent' may be on indefinite hold in many sectors and disciplines, there is no doubt that it is most definitely raging again over those individuals whose specialist technical skills and entrepreneurial application are key to driving businesses forward."