The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey of Australian hiring trends released today reveals that the pace of hiring is set to slow further in the first quarter of 2009.
The Manpower survey interviews over 2,672 employers throughout Australia about their hiring intentions for the next three months. According to employers, the upcoming quarter’s hiring pace will decline moderately from +17% to +12%. However, the year-on-year comparison reveals a considerable decline of 16 percentage points.
“Hiring intentions in Australia have been on a downward trend since the second quarter of 2008 and have fallen noticeably in the last three months. The majority of employers are telling us that they will take a ‘wait and see’ approach – with more than six out of 10 indicating they plan no changes to headcount in the quarter ahead. However, many also indicate they will move quickly to reduce over-capacity and support costs,” said Lincoln Crawley, Managing Director, Manpower Australia and
From the recent survey data, there has been a widespread decrease in hiring intentions in all States, with employers in the Hobart/Tasmania, Brisbane/Queensland and Melbourne/Victoria regions most hesitant to take on staff. And in five of seven industry sectors, there has also been a decline in employer hiring confidence, with those in the Manufacturing, Wholesale & Retail Trade and Mining & Construction industry sectors reporting the biggest pull-back in hiring plans.
“The Net Employment Outlook is the weakest it has been since the survey started in Australia. This is in stark contrast to a year ago when we were dealing with chronic and widespread talent shortages. Even though times are tough, employers should think creatively about alternative employment options to provide them the agility to remain competitive,” said Mr Crawley.