Far fewer employers planning to boost staff in second half of 2022

But more expected to fill vacated positions

Far fewer employers planning to boost staff in second half of 2022

With the threat of recession, nearly half of U.S. employers (46 per cent) are looking to add talent to their current pool in the next six months.

That’s down considerably from 65 per cent in the first quarter of the year, according to a survey by Robert Half. 

However, 46 per cent also expect to fill vacated positions, up from 33 per cent in the first quarter of 2022.

"Despite talk of an economic slowdown, many companies remain in hiring mode – and professionals with in-demand skills continue to have options," says Paul McDonald, Robert Half senior executive director.

"In addition to staffing critical functions, employers are increasingly turning to contract talent to stay nimble while keeping projects moving forward and productivity high."

Forty-five percent of managers across practice areas plan to bring in more contract professionals by year-end — especially in technology (60 per cent) and finance and accounting (54 per cent). And 72 per cent of employers intend to hire more entry-level or early-career professionals.

Half (50 per cent) of Canadian employers say they need more employees but lack the capacity to hire, according to a previous report.

Just six per cent are not adding new or filling vacated positions – up from two per cent in the first quarter of 2022, and two per cent are eliminating positions, up from one per cent in the first six months of the year, finds Robert Half’s survey of more than 1,500 managers with hiring responsibilities in finance and accounting, technology, marketing and creative, legal, administrative and customer support, and human resources from June 17 to July 14, 2022.

Top hiring challenges

Nearly nine in 10 (88 per cent) of managers find it challenging to find skilled professionals. This is primarily due to a lack of qualified talent (38 per cent) and candidates' salary expectations being higher than what their company is willing to offer (22 per cent).

And those that have the resources are doing different things to attract workers:

  • 46 per cent are increasing starting salaries
  • 34 per cent are providing signing bonuses
  • 33 per cent are offering remote options
  • 31 per cent are evaluating candidates outside of their company's geography and allowing new hires to live anywhere
  • 28 per cent are loosening education, skills or experience requirements

And employers are still bracing for more resignations. Nearly eight in 10 (78 per cent) are concerned about more employees quitting, and more than half of managers (51 per cent) saw an increase in voluntary turnover within their department in the last year.

"As long as the job market favours workers, staff retention will continue to be a big concern for businesses. Doubling down on employee wellbeing, empowerment and development initiatives can go a long way toward building staff satisfaction and loyalty as the market fluctuates,” says McDonald.

Labour shortages (48 per cent) and employee turnover (31 per cent) are bigger operational challenges than supply chain issues (nine per cent) for global employers, according to digital frontline workplace WorkJam.

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