A round-up of recruitment sector market reports

The last few years have been an extremely turbulent period for the staffing sector. Recruitment is booming, but the skills gap is becoming concerningly wide, which raises the question: what’s in store for the future of hiring? This report offers an analysis of the most recent global hiring trends and the future hiring intentions of employers.

Monster: The Future of Work, 2022 Global report

In the annual Future of Work Global Report, Monster uses its original data (conducted among 3,000 recruiters/those involved in talent acquisition, HR, and/or the recruitment industry as well as a global employee survey) to explore and make predictions on the future of the working landscape. The report indicates hope for increased hiring and a new and improved work environment.

The report uses the data collected from employers to identify and analyse the top three challenges that will impact the staffing sector in the next three years:

1. Finding candidates with the right skills: More than 9 out of 10 employers say they are struggling to fill positions due to the ongoing skills gap. 29% of employers agree that the skills gap has increased compared to a year ago.

2. Work/life balance expectations: From workplace safety concerns to employees getting used to working remotely or having more flexible hours, candidate and employer priorities are getting harder to align, with some employers reluctant to meet these new expectations.

3. Increased competition: It’s no secret that the recruitment landscape is now extremely competitive, Scott Gutz, chief executive at Monster agrees, revealing that his employees are routinely approached with significant offers.

“We’re focused on making sure that we are being competitive from a salary and benefits perspective, but we’re also probably just as focused on the environment in which people work.” (Scott Gutz).

Here are the standout trends based on Monster’s findings:

Return to work plans are in flux: 43% of employers believe that the hybrid working model is the way of the future. “From Delta to Omicron, from announcements about going back to work to the delay of those announcements, there have been changes in employee and employer perspectives on if and when is the right time to go back to an in-person work environment,” says Gutz. Suggesting that a significant proportion of employers do not expect to revert to post-pandemic working conditions, instead opting for a blend of in-office and remote working conditions.

DEI initiatives have shifted from planning stages to implementation: Nearly 4 in 10 employers cited the need to build a diverse workforce as their top DEI priority for 2022. And 67% of Gen Z recruiters are increasing outreach to outside organisations with diverse talent pipelines to make it happen. This is reflective of the increased competition and the need for firms to be strategic if they hope to attract the new generation of talent in what is a tough hiring landscape.

Job seekers are in the driver’s seat but may not realise it: Among active job seekers, 26% express low confidence in finding the right job fit, while about one-quarter of candidates say they are sceptical of employer promises. Highlighting just how crucial it is for recruitment agencies to be good communicators of an employer’s values, company culture and job perks, and indicating a window of opportunity for those that do.

World Employment and Social Outlook, 2022

This year’s World Employment and Social Outlook analyses the labour market recovery and how this has unfolded across the world. It assesses global patterns, regional differences and outcomes across economic sectors and groups of workers. The report also makes educated labour market projections for 2022 and 2023.

Here are the main takeaways:

Uneven sector recovery

The report reveals that, in some sectors such as those relating to technology, the rapid expansion since the onset of the pandemic has generated the need for more workers. And as these developments unfold, a rapid rise in demand for labour could lead to higher wages in these sectors. Such increases in wages could become more widespread if international migration resumes.

On the other hand, the accelerating technology adoption can be labour saving and many sectors across the globe, such as construction, retail and hospitality, have shed jobs, driving a flow of workers into other sectors.

The sectors that are seeing a growing need for workers tend to demand higher skills, tech-related industries, for example. These trends are contributing to a further polarization of wages and working conditions.

Gender discrepancies:

The report goes on to analyse the effects of the pandemic on the global workforce, finding that females, especially young women, have been among the worst affected, and their recovery is among the slowest. Supply chain disruptions have been largely responsible for this, and when lockdowns kept children home from school, they added to household care burdens, of which women generally had a disproportionate share.

The Rise of Remote work

The report also touches on the rise of remote working in relation to the pandemic. As we know, Covid-19 saw the enforcement of remote working restrictions, which was later favoured by many, offering people greater flexibility. However, this style of work can also threaten to exacerbate inequalities.

Another perk of remote working is that a larger pool of work and employees are available since physical proximity is no longer a constraint. However, while workers who have access to technology and higher skills will have options to participate in remote work, those who do not, will not be able to do so. This is widening the gap between those in more advantaged positions and those who are not.

Labour market recovery will require additional support

Employment losses and a drop in labour income were prominent themes in 2021, with low and lower-middle-income countries fairing the worst. Furthermore, people who were already disadvantaged in the labour market – such as women, youth, the elderly, and migrant workers – have experienced higher employment losses than other groups.

Moving forwards, heightened awareness that such crises can happen and the disastrous effects they can have will not be enough to face future crises of this magnitude.

To curb inequality and gather the resources to fund public investment, there is a growing drive towards global coordination on corporate taxation, constituting a global “build back better” agenda. This will aim to prompt future preparedness in countries – both developed and developing.

McKinsey: How to play the new talent game and win back workers

Published in March 2022, McKinsey uses its recent survey of almost 600 workers, who voluntarily left a job, to explore why employees who optionally left the workforce during the pandemic aren’t coming back. The research also discusses how businesses can attract these individuals back.

With the survey revealing that 44% of workers said that they have little to no interest in returning to traditional jobs, here are the top three reasons that candidates are leaving:

1. Because they can. The cost of switching jobs has gone down significantly and there is much less of a stigma associated with showing a gap in your CV. Because of the current labour shortage and the greater acceptance of remote work, employees in many industries are confident that they can find work on their own terms.

2. Because they are upset. Those who voluntarily left cited experiences with uncaring leaders, unsustainable expectations of work performance, and lack of career advancement as factors in their decision.

3. Because they are exhausted. McKinsey’s research shows that poor mental health (burnout and stress), family-care demands, and reflections on purpose brought on by the pandemic played big roles in why some workers left their companies.

Getting candidates back to work:

The general response to the employee exodus has been to use short-term solutions to address labour shortages, such as paying more to keep disengaged employees on board. However, for long-term results, more focus needs to be placed on attracting an untapped workforce, including:

Non-traditional workers:

Talent acquisition teams often focus on hiring candidates who fit the traditional definitions of a job applicant. But to compete successfully for today’s workforce, recruiters must consider non-traditional workers who aren’t on everyone’s radar, according to the research. These might include students, “boomerang” employees (those who return to a company after leaving) and those who are currently doing part-time or contract work.

To reach non-traditional workers, McKinsey recommends that companies actively lower the barriers to entry and rethink requirements for certain roles. Even before doing any outreach, employers should consider the critical skills that the company requires.

Latent workers:

Recruiters should also consider latent workers: those who are not currently part of the workforce, and not actively seeking a traditional job at a traditional employer. McKinsey estimates that this untapped source of labour could be as many as 23 million people.

To reach latent workers, businesses need to change their hiring strategy. Instead of using the same old online hiring platforms and keeping their searches local, they should think creatively about their referral programs and acknowledge that the best candidates may be outside the immediate radius of the company’s headquarters.

Moving onwards

The new labour landscape is undoubtedly tough, and recruiters must think of innovative ways to access new talent pools and get ahead of stiff competition. Reaching and attracting non-traditional and latent workers is a good place to start.

Manpower Group Employment Outlook Survey: Q2

Conducted in January 2022, the ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook is a global survey of more than 41,000 employers across 40 countries and territories, reporting a strong hiring outlook for Q2.

Here are the main takeaways:

Given the well-documented global skills shortages, it should come as little surprise that this report reveals that demand for skilled workers continues around the world, with employers in 39 of 40 countries reporting positive Net Employment Outlooks (NEOs).

Employer expectations

Employers around the world are still expecting to hire more workers in the second quarter of 2022, reporting a seasonally adjusted Net Employment Outlook of +29%. Hiring intentions have increased considerably year-over-year with a moderate decrease quarter-over-quarter: +20% and -7%, respectively when comparing Q1 and Q2.

46% of employers are planning to hire, with only 16% expecting a decrease and 35% planning to keep workforce levels steady. 3% of employers are still undecided.

Global hiring

The survey found that hiring recovery is already underway and looks set to continue to carry momentum through to June, with the North America region reporting the most optimism (+38%) followed by South and Central America (+35%), APAC (+28%) and EMEA (+22%).

Hiring Intentions in EMEA Improved in all countries year-on-year for the third consecutive quarter. Compared with Q1, 2022 hiring intentions improved in 2 countries and declined in 17, while remaining unchanged in only 1 (Greece).

Meanwhile, employers in Sweden report the strongest outlook of 38%, up 4% since last quarter with strongest the expectations reported in Mellansverige and the most optimistic outlooks in the Not-for-Profit sector. Organisations in France report an outlook of 23%, which is down by 3% quarter on quarter, with most optimistic hiring intentions in IT & Tech.

Roles most in demand:

Digital roles continue to drive most demand: IT & Technology reported the strongest outlook (+40%), which is in line with the pandemic’s acceleration of technology. This is followed by Banking (+31%) and Manufacturing (+31%). The weakest hiring intentions were found in Restaurants and Hotels (20%), given that the Hospitality arena was one of the most affected by COVID restrictions, it’s likely that these figures reflect a more difficult and timely recovery.


It’s extremely promising that employers across the world are reporting a positive hiring outlook for Q2 of 2022, however the fact that the skills gap shows no signs of narrowing should be cause for cause for concern. The dearth of talent and ongoing skills shortage is not new news, but unless actions are put in place to tackle these global issues, full economic recovery could be threatened.

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