After a volatile year of events, Hong Kong shows sustained trends for growth. Links’ Hong Kong Job Index demonstrates increasing business confidence in the local market, recording continuous increases in job vacancies through most of H1 2021.
For the first time since launch, the Links’ Job index shows sustained signs of growth and recovery in the Hong Kong market. Links International introduced Links Job Index at the break of 2020. It provides data-based analysis of the Hong Kong job market based on numbers and response rates in respect of a ‘basket’ of common commercial job types in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong Businesses Rebuilding Operations & Gaining Confidence
According to the Links Job Index, businesses have been showing stable signs of recovery since the beginning of 2021. The number of job postings in July rose close to 70% since January 2021 with H1 demonstrating a steady 11.5% average monthly increase.
Links Hong Kong Job Posting Index
The reported number of job postings coincides with the drop in Hong Kong’s unemployment rate which decreased from the 16-year high of 7.2% in February this year to the current 5.5%. Business confidence rose to levels only seen since the third quarter of 2018 according to Census & Statistics Department. Hong Kong’s real GDP also saw a notable 7.5% year-on-year growth in the second quarter of 2021 and a 7.8% increase for H1.
Driving Forces of Sustained Growth in Hong Kong
Hong Kong looks to have found its rhythm in stabilising the epidemic situation. This has largely facilitated the economic recovery in Hong Kong, one that has been in the works throughout the year of 2020.
The Hong Kong Government has also played a key role in rebuilding the economy, especially with the launch of the Consumption Voucher Scheme. The scheme will help stimulate consumer sentiment and lend support to consumption-related sectors, which are currently one of the most affected with unemployment rates at 9.4%. Links International saw the demand for sales professionals spike in May and June, growing 11% and 8% respectively as businesses prepared for the spending boost.
Despite Hong Kong’s steady growth, industries have been recovering at different rates. Tourism, for example, continues to remain at a standstill due to international restrictions and quarantines. Certain other sectors are also seeing slower recoveries.
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Recovery Fuels Shifting Demands for Various Job Functions
Links Job Index documents a reshuffle in the demand for different professions. Client-side and administrative roles have seen the greatest bounce back since the drop in 2020, seeing over 20% growth at the start of the year. This is not unexpected as both functions were heavily affected by the hardened travel restrictions and social distancing regulations.
Meanwhile, demand for IT talent continues to stand strong. The break of 2020 had many businesses scrambling to arm their operation, fuelling many digital transformations. Businesses showed an unwavering hunger throughout 2020, as IT jobs increased 6% while total job postings dropped 7.5% for the year. Businesses continue to exhibit a need for tech talent in 2021 as job postings have increased 40% since the start of the year.
Hong Kong’s economy will largely be affected by the global development of the pandemic. However, as Hong Kong’s vaccination rates increase with support from corporations and as more effective schemes are introduced to stimulate the economy, businesses are expected to grow. The Links Job Index is updated each quarter. Subscribe to Links International Job Index releases to stay in on the latest market developments.