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World – Demand for skilled talent set to grow in Q4 2018, hiring outlooks strongest in Japan and Taiwan

11 September 2018

Employers around the world are intending to increase their workforce in the fourth quarter of 2018, with 43 of 44 countries reporting positive hiring outlooks, according to ManpowerGroup's latest Employment Outlook Survey.

The survey of more than 59,000 employers across 44 countries and territories shows hiring intentions strengthened in 22 countries, remained steady in eight and slowed in 14. Continued positive employment opportunities are expected over the next three months with hiring confidence strongest in Japan, Taiwan, the US, Romania and Slovenia. Employers in Switzerland and Argentina report the weakest hiring prospects.

ManpowerGroup’s Net Employment Outlook is derived by taking the percentage of employers anticipating an increase in hiring activity and subtracting from this the percentage of employers expecting a decrease in hiring activity.

Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO, commented, "We continue to see optimism from employers around the world in spite of tariff disputes, proposed new populist legislation and the uncertainty of a hard or soft Brexit.”

“Across most countries, hiring intentions are net positive, as access to skilled talent continues to be of critical importance for employers globally,” Prising said. “In the Digital Age we're seeing organisations across all sectors undergo significant transformation. From Manufacturing to Services, roles are emerging that require new skills, creating mismatches between what is needed and what is available in an increasingly tight labour market. It's important for employers to create a culture of learnability so that their people are ready and able to upskill and adapt."

In the EMEA region, staffing levels are expected to grow in 25 of 26 countries surveyed. Employers in Romania (+19%), Slovenia (+19%) and Hungary (+18%) report the strongest outlooks. The only negative outlook across all countries and territories in EMEA is reported in Switzerland (-2%).

In the UK, the report found that employers continue to report modest hiring intentions (+4%) with a marked improvement in the Finance & Business Services sector, up 6% quarter-over-quarter.

In Asia Pacific, employers in all eight countries and territories expect to hire more people in Q4 2018.  Hiring Outlooks are strongest in Japan (+26%) and Taiwan (+21%). The report found that solid workforce gains are forecast to continue in Japan as growing export volumes boost hiring in the Manufacturing sector, which has seen sustained positive hiring intentions since 2010. Meanwhile, Taiwanese employers continue to report strong hiring intentions led by the Services sector.

Global trade uncertainty seems to be impacting Chinese hiring plans as the outlook falls by 4% quarter-on-quarter yet remains positive at +6%. The weakest sector is Mining and Construction (+6%).

In the Americas region, positive outlooks were reported in all ten countries surveyed with the US seeing the region's most upbeat forecast (+19%). Canadian employers continue to report positive hiring intentions (+14%) while Brazilian employers reported an outlook of +7%. 

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