Industry representatives are predicting rapid hiring increases in 2010, especially in services roles, but the skills shortages will again become an issue.
A survey of over 2000 Australian employers for the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey found a 19 per cent net employment outlook, up 8 per cent on the last quarter. This figure is due to an increase in employers planning to hire (26 per cent), and a fall in the number planning to decrease hiring (7 per cent).
Hiring expectations were strongest in the services sector (up 24 per cent) including ICT services. The overall percentage puts Australia in sixth place globally behind India, Brazil, Singapore, Taiwan and Costa Rica. It was also far ahead of the US, UK and France, which showed little or no hiring improvement rates.
Manpower managing director, Lincoln Crawley, said strong services growth could be attributed in part to overall market growth.
“As confidence comes back into the market and hiring increases across the board, services are required to support that,” he said. “The trend away from fixed to variable costs is also a factor.”
Into 2010, Crawley said the boom in growth will settle and hiring patterns should return back to a sense of normalcy, but the skills shortage would reemerge.
“Specialist skills are in hot demand,” Crawley said. “The skills shortage never really disappeared, but it did become more specialised – we will see organisations more willing to take on people with most, but not all, of the criteria required for a role.
“Those organisations have shown a greater interest in working with staff to train them properly. I anticipate a higher range of skills in demand overall in 2010.”
Meanwhile, a study by recruitment specialist, Randstad, found the job market had been improving for the past six months, and expected it to continue to do so into the new year. The report also claimed verticals such as banking and financing, hit hardest by the effects of the downturn, are showing strong signs of recovery and IT jobs in those areas are growing rapidly.
In a release, Randstad’s IT operations director, Malcolm Dunford, said the outlook for the first quarter in 2010 was positive.
“Jobs for contract workers, in particular, will see and increase as companies look to ease the labour pressures being felt this year and hire staff to cope with a demanding work schedule,” he said in the release.
“This year alone, we saw a 25 per cent increase in IT contractor roles.”