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Recruitment at a Glance: Overview and Trends

Ольга Банцекина (Глава Представительства, Coleman Services UK)

2017 is steadily coming to its end in a positive mood and with promising expectations from businesses towards the next year. Inflation is low (compare the official data: 1,87 Jan-Oct.2017 and 4.54 for the same period of 2016), GDP growing (Fitch has increased their forecast to 2,0% for the current year), investments rising (5% of growth for the first 6 months of the year according to ROSSTAT), households coming back from savings to a consumption mode – all these signs giving us an inspiring feeling of a better business future in the coming 2018, despite of the uneasy presentiments connected to political issues including the Russian presidential elections.

In a natural connection to the said above recruitment market has become much more alive in the course of the year, the companies started hiring. According to the EY survey, 28% of their respondents were planning to increase their staff numbers in 2017 (by 14% on average), as a result the number of vacancies in recruitment agencies have grown by 20% this year, simultaneously with the rise of the average cost for a vacancy by 35% (cost of a vacancy is dependent on the compensation level for the position, the level of the positions themselves which companies give to the agencies, demands towards the professional skills and background of the candidates, Coleman Services survey). The period of “closing” a vacancy (fulfillment of a contract) by the agencies has shortened gradually, the fact showing the companies’ real necessity to hire.

If comparing the general numbers of published vacancies in the period Jan-Sep 2016 and 2017 (hh.ru), the average increase is 5% (Moscow -12%, St.Petersburg – 14%). The highest demand for specialists is in the spheres of sales, IT, production/engineering, retail, pharma.

Employees on their behalf have also become more active. According to another Coleman Services’ survey among employees, 39% of respondents have been planning to change their jobs during 2017, 37% more have been thinking and considering the option in accordance with the circumstances. 44% are expecting salary rise and are ready to move in case it does not happen. Job seekers do state a shortened period of looking for a new job.

Tough demographic issues are still there, making employers revise their age restrictions (in both directions, the younger age and the elder one) as well as their professional and background demands towards the candidates. It is hard to name the most “difficult-to-find” professions this year; the deficit of qualified employees seems to be all around. Unemployment rate is low (about 5% on average), giving less and less hopes for the employers.

It is necessary for a company to realize nowadays that less and less candidates are ready to decrease their salary expectations (according to hh.ru, only about 42% of potential candidates are ready to consider positions with a lower salary than they wish, 38% of respondents staying strictly at their levels disregarding a potentially longer search period for a new job). Candidates are much more optimistic in their assessment of own prospects with both the new job search and current job opportunities. We presume this tendency is going to strengthen.

Another trend of the year is the total automation, digitalization and even robotization of many HR processes. The main aim of automation in this area is the increase of quality of different projects, such as optimization of search and selection, compensation and benefits calculations, data collection and analysis.

The well-known recruitment bot Vera is also an example of this new movement from the human search and selection means towards the automatic faceless and averaged systems. Despite being not very successful for the moment (according to the feedback from its users), it is a good case in the general tendency of substitution of human resources in many areas of business and life, which is actually the nearest future for all of us.

Still trying to save the budgets more and more companies are using distant labor (more often –partially distant, when employees are allowed to work from home several times a week or a month). According to EY, 24% of companies (compare to 18% in 2016) are using such options this year. Further development of IT technologies is making it easier, limitations being the difficulties in control over employees working on a distant basis, as well as their low average level of self-control.
Despite all prohibitions and restrictions from the Russian lawmakers, flexible labor is becoming more popular among the employees, specifically of the younger and elder generations, which is quite logical and had been forecasted. Companies are more frequently using various outsourcing services from providers, employees are more eagerly and easily considering temporary/project/part-time job opportunities for such outsourcing projects, the market gradually becoming more structured and civilized.

According to different forecasts the numbers of employees of generation Y among the employees is going to grow in 2018 up to 50%, forcing HR to adapt and sufficiently influencing the methods and procedures of search, selection and HR management within the companies. As a consequence, the trend of recruitment via social chains is going to strengthen and develop further.

Yet another tendency becoming obvious is the shortening of numbers of low-skilled positions in the majority of industries. Demands of the companies towards personnel qualifications are growing each year, making it even more difficult to find qualified staff, simultaneously releasing lots of candidates of lower skills to the market.
As always, let’s hope for the better New Year to come – for all of our businesses and us! Wishing all the readers of the Moscow Times a very prosperous and exciting 2018!


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