Global Q3 Hiring Reveals More Positive Trending than Last Year

Where economic struggles continue, most are less intense than in 2013

By Theresa Minton-Eversole Jun 17, 2014
Global staffing levels are expected to increase in 37 of 42 countries and territories surveyed during the third quarter of 2014 with the U.S. hiring forecast the strongest it’s been in six years, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey, released June 10 by workforce solutions firm ManpowerGroup.

Overall, the most recent forecasts are softer than they were in the second quarter of the year but stronger than they were in year-over-year comparisons, reports Manpower.

“Opportunities for job seekers across global labor markets are expected to remain mostly positive with few signs that hiring intentions are decisively trending in one direction or another,” said ManpowerGroup CEO Jonas Prising in a press statement. “There are, however, encouraging signs in Europe, where employer confidence in Greece, Ireland and Spain continues to stabilize in the wake of a prolonged period of pessimistic, post-recession forecasts.”

Hiring in the Americas

Employers in all 10 countries in the Americas and all eight countries and territories in the Asia Pacific region surveyed are expecting to grow payrolls during the next three months, as are employers in 19 of 24 European, Middle Eastern and African (EMEA) countries.

Of the more than 18,000 U.S. employers surveyed, 22 percent anticipate an increase in staff levels in their third quarter hiring plans, while anticipated staff reductions remain among the lowest in survey history at 4 percent. Seventy-one percent of employers, however, expect no change in their hiring plans.

“While dramatic jumps in hiring are uncommon, we continue to see a slow, yet steady, increase in demand for talent from our clients as they take a holistic approach in rebuilding their employee base,” said Prising.

Other recent reports also show positive hiring intentions by U.S. employers. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported June 6 that total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 217,000 in May, holding the country’s unemployment rate at 6.3 percent. Hiring rates will reach four-year highs for the month of June in the manufacturing and service sectors, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Leading Indicators of National Employment report.

“These increased employment expectations may signal a move into a more active recruiting environment,” said Jennifer Schramm, GPHR, manager of the SHRM workforce trends program.

Employers have a positive outlook in all 13 industry sectors included in the Manpower survey, with mining, wholesale and retail trade, and leisure and hospitality employers reporting the strongest hiring intentions.

Meanwhile, Canadian employers project a fair hiring climate for the third quarter, with employers in the transportation and public utilities sector reporting the strongest job prospects; 22 percent of employers in Mexico said they expect to increase their payrolls in the next three months.

Among countries in South America, Peru reported the strongest hiring plans while Brazil reported its weakest forecast since the survey was launched in 2009.

“Despite the downward trend … employers continue to anticipate payroll gains in most of the eight industry sectors and in all five regions during the next quarter, indicating that there is expected to be some opportunities which will be available for the Brazilian job seeker,” said Riccardo Barberis, country manager of ManpowerGroup Brazil, in a news statement.

EMEA Hiring

Employment outlooks improved for only six European, Middle Eastern and African countries quarter over quarter, according to Manpower, but they improved in 20 countries year over year. Third-quarter hiring plans are strongest in Turkey, Bulgaria and Slovenia; the weakest and only negative forecasts are reported by employers in Italy, Belgium, France and the Netherlands.

Asia Pacific Hiring

Compared to last year, employment prospects are brighter in Asia Pacific. Employers in India and Taiwan report the strongest third-quarter hiring plans. Australia reports the weakest forecast, while China remains unchanged from both last quarter and a year ago. Employer confidence remains stable in Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore compared with the last quarter, as well as compared with a year ago.

Theresa Minton-Eversole is an editor for SHRM Online. Follow her on Twitter at @SHRMTheresa.

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