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52% of employers to increase permanent headcount – here’s where

Permanent headcount discussions


Over one-half (52%) of New Zealand employers intend to increase permanent staff levels in the next 12 months, according to recruiting experts Hays. 
 
Based on findings in the recruiter’s FY21/22 Hays Salary Guide, 16% of the close to 600 employers surveyed also intend to increase their use of temporary or contract staff. 

Together, Hays notes, this represents an impressive volume of opportunities for skilled professionals.

Rapid recovery underway

The Hays Salary Guide shows that unemployment has continued its downward trend. According to the data, over three-quarters of employers say permanent staffing levels are either above (30%) or equal (47%) to their pre-COVID-19 level.

In addition, 68% of employers have returned to growth or rapid growth and 70% say business activity will increase over the next 12 months.

Furthermore, 62% of employers are optimistic about the wider economic climate and the employment opportunities it may create in the next two to five years. 

Talent shortage imminent – the North Island will be hit hardest

70% of employers say skills shortages will impact the effective operation of their organisation or department in the next 12 months.  

The looming threat of skills shortages is more acute in certain locations than others. New Zealand’s North Island is facing the greatest impact, according to employers, as skills shortages spread across this location quicker than others.  

In the North Island, 74% of employers say skills shortages will impact the effective operation of their organisation. 75% say permanent staffing levels are above or equal to pre-COVID-19 levels and 53% expect permanent staffing levels to increase in the next 12 months.

Meanwhile, in the South Island, 58% of employers say skills shortages will impact the effective operation of their organisation. 79% say permanent staffing levels are above or equal to pre-COVID-19 levels and 47% expect permanent staffing levels to increase.

“Stronger than anticipated” recovery

“Pleasingly, New Zealand’s economic recovery is stronger than anticipated,” says Adam Shapley, Managing Director of Hays in New Zealand. “Fiscal stimulus and control of the spread of COVID-19 has helped to create a jobs market recovery, with employers navigating their way out of the pandemic and reinvesting in headcount growth.

“However, acquiring top talent with the right skills is not as easy as it first seems. An old challenge has reared its head once more – skills shortages. 

“With hiring activity increasing, the supply and demand imbalance has now tipped firmly in favour of skilled professionals. 

“While employers have so far managed the shortage, they are reaching their turning point. In the next 12 months, almost seven in ten say skills shortages will impact the effective operation of their organisation or department.

“There’s also a small but notable number –23% – who do not believe they have the talent required to achieve their organisation’s strategic objectives. 

“This skills imbalance is a substantial treat to those organisations that continue to invest in projects and headcount to return to, or cement, their growth,” he said. 

The Hays Salary Guide is based on a survey of close to 600 organisations in New Zealand and more than 500 skilled professionals. 

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About Hays

Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.

For further information please contact Adam Shapley, Managing Director of Hays in New Zealand, on adam.shapley@hays.net.nz or +64 (0) 9 375 9424.

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