Employment Outlooks Optimistic Across the Globe: Employers in Japan and the U.S. Report Strongest Hiring Plans for Q2

U.S. labor market optimism continues as unemployment remains low and employers add workers

Global hiring intentions remain positive for Q2 2019, with 40 of 44 countries planning to increase headcount, according to the ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey published. In the quarterly survey of 60,000 employers, hiring intentions have strengthened in 15 countries, remain constant in 11 and are flat in the remaining 18. Employers report the most optimistic Outlooks in Japan, the U.S. and Greece, while ArgentinaHungary and Spain report the weakest Outlooks. Hiring intentions remain stable across Europe when compared with the previous quarter, though the region shows signs of softening year-over-year especially in the UK, Spain and the Netherlands.

“Employers in almost all countries we surveyed globally report positive hiring Outlooks for Q2, with most optimism in the U.S. and Japan,” said Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO. “Despite anticipated lower growth in some parts of the world, the importance of workforce planning and the fundamental need for human capital is as strong as ever. With talent shortages still at record highs in many places, and as people increasingly require skills that augment technology, employers have an important role to play in upskilling and reskilling people for these in-demand jobs so people can achieve continuous employment.”

HR Technology Interview: Jumpstart 2019: TecHR Interview with Tracy Malingo, SVP of Product Strategy at Verint

Global Hiring Plans by Region

EMEA: Employers report positive Outlooks in 23 countries surveyed in the EMEA region, with the strongest outlooks in Croatia (+34%) and Greece (+21%). HungarySpain and Turkey reported flat Outlooks of 0% – three of the four weakest hiring prospects globally.

  • UK employers remain cautiously optimistic for Q2 with little change from the previous quarter as the outcome of Brexit remains uncertain. When compared with the same quarter of 2018, the UK Outlook declined by two percentage points.
  • Overall hiring intentions in France remain stable quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year, and employers anticipate the strongest Manufacturing sector prospects since 2003: a 10-percentage-point jump from the previous quarter.
  • In Spain the labor market softened for the second quarter with a flat (0%) Outlook for Q2 2019, driven by the weakest hiring plans in seven years in the South region, currently reporting an Outlook of -10%.
  • For the second consecutive quarter, Turkey has reported its weakest hiring plans since 2011. This comes amid a currency crisis, which has led to ongoing political and economic uncertainty in the country.

HR Technology News: New Survey Uncovers the Impacts of Hidden Workforce Risk

Americas: Headcount is expected to grow in nine of the 10 countries surveyed. For the sixth quarter in a row, U.S. employers report the strongest hiring intentions in the region (+19%). Employers in Argentina report a flat Outlook (0%) an improvement of four percentage points quarter-over-quarter.

  • The U.S. is continuing to show positive hiring intentions with a +19% Outlook and forecasted gains in all 13 industry sectors.
  • Employers in Mexico report a strong +12% hiring intention for the coming quarter, led by the Manufacturing sector, which has improved three percentage points year-over-year.
  • Argentina’s labor market shows signs of improving, with a 4-percentage-point increase from last quarter. However, employers in the country report the weakest hiring intentions in the region and globally. The national Outlook has been weakened by reduced hiring in the Wholesale & Retail Trade sector, which reports its worst Outlook in 12 years.

Asia Pacific: All eight countries across the Asia Pacific region are expecting to increase headcount in the upcoming quarter. Hiring Outlooks are strongest in Japan (+27%) and Hong Kong (+19%).

  • Unemployment in Japan is at a 24-year low and the labor market continues to tighten. Japanese employers are reporting a 16-year high hiring Outlook as the economic expansion continues.
  • In China, hiring intentions weaken two percentage points both year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter to an Outlook of +7%. With ongoing trade discussions impacting the wider economy, employers in the Manufacturing sector anticipate weakest hiring among all industries, falling by three percentage points.

HR Technology Interview: TecHR Interview with Patrick Van Der Mijl, Co-Founder at Speakap