Employers Report Strong Hiring across Many Markets, Driven by Uptick in Asia Pacific, U.S. and Eastern Europe

Employers globally are reporting positive hiring intentions as those in 41 of 43 countries forecast an increase in staffing levels in Q1 2018, according to the latest ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey.

The strongest Outlooks globally are reported in the U.S., Japan, Taiwan and India. Employers in Australia, Japan, Norway, Romania and the U.S. are reporting the healthiest hiring plans in five years or more.

Outlooks among employers in Eastern Europe, and Greece outpace those in Western Europe. Employers in Austria and Italy report the weakest Outlooks across Europe and the globe while job prospects remain upbeat in Romania, Hungary and Poland. In Spain and Portugal, employers report more optimistic Outlooks year-over-year while in the UK, Germany and Belgium they report weaker (yet still positive) hiring intentions. In the UK, concerns over Brexit may be impacting employer confidence as the overall forecast dips to its weakest level since 2012.

“The first quarter of 2018 is looking bright for jobseekers with employment Outlooks improving in many markets,” said Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO. “Employers across the globe and especially in the U.S, Asia Pacific and parts of Europe are positive across a number of sectors, and people with in-demand skills will find themselves in high demand. Employers will need to work hard to attract and develop people with the skills they need to remain competitive. As globalization and digital transformation impact different countries and industries at different times, upskilling and reskilling tomorrow’s workforce for available jobs will be critical for long-term employability. The future looks positive, providing we help people develop the skills they need to capture these opportunities.”

Of the nearly 59,000 employers surveyed across 43 countries and territories confidence levels have strengthened year-on-year in 25 countries and territories.

Global Hiring Plans by Region

EMEA: Staffing levels are expected to grow in 23 of 25 countries surveyed with flat labor markets in the remaining two.

  • Employers in Romania and Slovenia report the strongest hiring plans in the EMEA region.
  • German employers report strong hiring intentions in Finance and Business Services with employers in Frankfurt and Munich reporting the most optimistic Outlooks.
  • The Outlook in France remains modest, with employers in Finance and Construction reporting the biggest year-over-year headcount growth.

Asia Pacific: Employers expect staffing levels to increase in all eight countries and territories with hiring sentiment strongest in Taiwan. The most cautious Outlook in the region is reported in China.

  • Australia is forecasting the strongest labor market in more than six years with an Outlook of +14%.
  • Hiring confidence in Japan remains solid with employers reporting the most optimistic forecast since 2007. Hiring activity is strongest in Transportation and Utilities, and Mining and Construction sectors.
  • Hiring intentions in India improve for the second consecutive quarter following the country’s weakest historical Outlook from Q3 2017. Increased opportunities for job seekers are expected in all seven industry sectors and across each of the four regions.

Americas: Positive Outlooks are reported in all 10 countries surveyed. U.S. employers report the region’s most upbeat forecast, with more than one in every five surveyed saying they intend to hire in the January-March time frame.

  • U.S. employers report the strongest Outlook in ten years, driven by optimism in Construction, Manufacturing and Transportation and Utilities sectors.
  • Canada’s Outlook improves for the third consecutive quarter. Hiring intentions are the most optimistic reported since Quarter 4 2013.
  • Hiring in Mexico remains favorable despite uncertainties associated with ongoing NAFTA negotiations. Forecasts are positive in all industry sectors and regions with the strongest Outlooks reported by employers in the Manufacturing and Transport & Communications sectors.
  • To view complete results for the ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey, visit www.manpowergroup.com/meos. The next survey will be released 13 March 2018 and will report hiring expectations for Q2 2018.

*The 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.
Source: Manpower Group