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Robert Walters: “Cautious optimism” in headcount decisions this year

F.Y. Teng | March 2, 2012
Consultants at the professional recruitment firm expect global economic uncertainty to figure significantly in companies’ hiring decisions in 2012.

The  13th edition of the Robert Walters Global Salary Survey is out and here are key findings from the report.

Looking back on 2011, the authors of the freely downloadable report found that:-
•    “Most banks remained conservative in their hiring as many of these firms had ‘overhired’ in 2010.”
•    “Despite a generally conservative climate within banks, there remained a demand for sales and relationship managers and credit analysts in SMEs and corporate banking to help banks generate revenue.”
•    “Commerce companies continued hiring experienced professionals in line with their growth strategies. Specifically, organisations recruited HR and IT professionals to support growth within oil and gas, chemicals, energy, pharmaceutical and industrial sectors.”
•    “We saw an increased demand for contractors in 2011, particularly within finance, HR and business support where organisations chose to hire talent on a short-term basis as they found it difficult to secure permanent headcount.”

As for the current year, they expect that:-
•    “The key operative for many organisations in 2012 is likely to be “cautious optimism”. Many companies will be careful in assessing global economic uncertainty as a factor in making headcount decisions.”
•    “Recruitment will still take place but organisations will be prudent in the first half of 2012, and be keen to introduce the right talent to add value to their company.”
•    “There is likely to be an influx of engineering, HR, secretarial support, IT, as well as sales & marketing roles for professionals across the FMCG, IT & telecommunications and industrial sectors. This is largely due to continued growth in these commerce areas which are less immediately affected by global economic uncertainty compared to the banking & financial services sector.”
•    “Technical healthcare will also be an area of growth with constant demand for experienced professionals due to its niche nature and limited talent pool.”
•    “Contracting may be an option for employers experiencing challenges in securing approval for additional permanent headcount, as well as for candidates who are open to the prospect of new exciting projects.”


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