Employers across the world report significant declines in hiring intentions for Q3 reflecting the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on health, the economy and employment across the world, according to ManpowerGroup’s Employment Outlook Survey.
The survey asked 38,000 employers across 43 countries whether they intend to hire additional workers or reduce the size of their workforce in the coming quarter. The report reveals weaker hiring intentions in all 43 countries compared with this time one year ago, and a dip to a 20 year low in 27 markets, reflecting the magnitude of the pandemic’s impact.
“These results show the impact the health crisis has had on hiring plans as Covid-19 moved in waves across the globe,” Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO, said.
In the EMEA region, Q3 employment outlooks declined quarter-over-quarter in all 26 countries.
UK employers report the weakest hiring prospects since the survey began in 1992 with hiring plans declining by 17%.
Employers in France report the weakest outlook since the survey began 17 years ago. The most significant declines are reported by employers in the restaurants & hotels sector and in wholesale & retail trade, declining by 66 and 27%, respectively.
In Italy, employers report the weakest hiring intentions in six years (-15%) driven by deep declines in the restaurants & hotels and the finance & business services sectors.
Employers in Germany report weaker quarter-over-quarter outlooks across all seven sectors, with the outlook in finance & business services declining by 17% to an 11-year low.
Across Asia Pacific, outlooks from employers in Japan and India rank as the strongest globally. However, the employment outlook in India has hit a 17-year low, with employers in manufacturing, services and wholesale & retail trade reporting their weakest forecasts since the survey began in 2005.
Employers in Singapore report the weakest outlook in 11 years and the weakest employment outlook globally. In both the manufacturing sector (-21%) and the services sector (-35%), employers anticipate a considerable decline in hiring plans.
Hiring intentions are the weakest in 17 years in Australia (-12%), the weakest outlooks are reported by employers in finance, insurance & real estate (-21%) and wholesale & retail trade (-19%).
The report also marks a record low outlook for nine of the ten Americas countries surveyed in almost twenty years, excluding the U.S.
“The significant declines across many countries reflect the unprecedented speed and magnitude of shutdown, which resulted in an almost total activity freeze across many industries” Prising said. “Typically, structural labor market changes take months if not years to impact. We believe this crisis will accelerate transformation that we have been tracking and predicting for some time.”
Employers were also asked when they expect hiring to return to pre-Covid-19 levels, with results revealing cautious optimism, and 54% predicting a return by April 2021.
“Employers will continue to require increasingly specific technical and soft skills, digitisation will accelerate, and individuals will demand a way of working that is closer to what they have wanted all along – more inclusive, more flexible and more wellbeing-oriented than we could ever have imagined,” Prising said.