What HR professionals are in demand?
The bulk of vacancies are coming from the financial services, professional services, and IT & technology sectors.
Businesses in these sectors are making considerable structural and cultural changes to stay ahead in their markets and be competitive on a global scale. As a result we are seeing a significant increase in the number of specialist roles. Reward, compensation and benefits roles have always commanded a premium salary and with the tightening of the economy, these specialists are being called into prominence even more over the past 12 months to build engagement and recognition for employees on a cost conscious budget.
There is also a demand for change managers; specialists who can both technically manage a change project, often with union consultation and involvement, and handle the harmonisation and cultural bedding-in thereafter. The volumes of employees these projects are impacting require multi-sited, often internationally experienced individuals to manage them. Change projects that involve significant mergers of departments and central services in a cost saving exercise and the need to preserve the sense of employee belonging is a key element to the change manager’s role.
The final area experiencing significant change for HR professionals is the rise in demand for contract assignments, albeit for generalist manager or business partner roles. Businesses are recruiting on a short-term project basis. Whether this is further nervousness about the growth of our economy and a reluctance to commit budgets in the long-term; or a desire to have projects managed by extra resources allowing the existing permanent workforce to focus on their remits remains to be seen. It's a situation we are monitoring and will come back to in our following two articles.