Talent Landscape in China Set for Change: 51% Employers Plan to Increase Headcount in the First-Half of 2016

February 22, 20168:07 am1343 views

The competition for talent looks set to heat up as employers and employees prepare for change. 6 in 10 employees are looking for a new job and 1 in 2 employers planning to increase headcount in the first-half of 2016.

New Hudson research reveals a talent landscape set for change, with 1 in 2 (51%) employers planning to increase headcount in the first half of 2016. Despite the background of an uncertain stock market, research suggests a highly liquid job market, with 63% actively or passively looking for a new job.

The Hudson Report: Forward Focus 2016, which for over 10 years has tracked employer hiring intentions in China, has been expanded to include data on employees and their career plans, providing a complete picture of the 2016 China talent market.

“With half of employers focusing on increasing headcount in the first half of 2016, the market to find the best talent will be highly competitive. This, coupled with the fact that 63% of professionals are seeking a new role, could mean that employers face losing their best talent to their rivals,” said Lily Bi, General Manager, Hudson Shanghai.

“Employers seeking to add headcount should not only ensure they have a robust talent attraction strategy in place but also focus on retaining the key talent they already have. Attraction and retention look set to be key issues for employers in 2016.”51 percent China Employers Increasing Headcount in 2016

Beijing and Shanghai are the two cities showing the highest intentions to hire, with the most mature and diverse markets. For both cities, the IT&T industry is the sector showing the strongest intentions to hire, with 71% intending to add headcount in Shanghai and 63% in Beijing.

See: What do Job Seekers in China Value Most When Choosing a Position?

China’s Banking & Financial Services sector is also showing strong intentions to hire, with 71% intending to increase headcount in Shanghai and 62% in Guangzhou.

“We are seeing a shift from employers looking to maintain headcount in the second half of 2015 to increasing headcount this year, and the main driver for this is organizational growth: 68% of employers named organizational growth as their number one reason for increasing headcount. Employers should plan well by building a talent pipeline for critical roles to ensure they get the best talent in the market,” Lily Bi said.

China professionals on the move

For the first time, the Hudson Report also surveyed employees about their career intentions and found that more than 6 in 10 are considering moving roles this year: 21% of respondents are actively seeking a new job and 42% are passively seeking one. In other words, the Chinese workforce is open to discussing opportunities and will move, should the right role present itself.

The survey also found that 83% of respondents would move industry and 74% would move country for the right job, demonstrating a highly liquid employment market.

“The idea of liquidity in the employment market reflects the fact that professionals are open to moving jobs, sectors and even countries for the right role. With half of employers looking to hire in the first half of 2016, understanding professionals and what they want will be the key to attracting the best talent,” Lily Bi added.

What do employees want?

The survey also looked at why people leave their current role and what they look for in a new role.

“It’s clear that career progression matters to individuals both as a key factor in taking a new role and leaving their current role. Employers should take note and ensure they offer clearly articulated career paths for their employees, providing visibility on how they can progress.”

“People rate salary almost as highly as career progression when it comes to looking for a new role, so you need to ensure your organization offers both. In a talent-short market, one or the other is simply not enough. If your company is seeking to attract the best people in a competitive industry or profession, it’s crucial to offer a competitive salary and to support this with a clear career plan,” Lily Bi concluded.

Also read: China’s Top 10 Talent Trends for 2016

Image credit: chinabusinessreview.com

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