I’ve recently come across a few interesting articles from industry experts which discuss the expected trends in the recruitment industry during 2024. It is expected that the underlying skills shortage will stay for now, which in turn creates a dynamic employment landscape, particularly when looking at the recent SEEK report on national salary trends over the last couple of months. So, what does the report show and what does this all mean for 2024?
National advertised salary trends showed a steady increase, with the SEEK ASI rising by 0.3% month-on-month in December, maintaining the same growth rate as October and November. Advertised salaries demonstrated a notable growth of 4.5% in the year leading up to December, mirroring the increase observed in the year preceding November. According to SEEK Senior Economist Matt Cowgill, this marks a positive shift as advertised salaries are now rising faster than prices after a prolonged period of declining real wages. The 4.5% growth in advertised salaries has outpaced the inflation rate of 4.3%, indicating a noteworthy improvement in real wage growth.
On another interesting note, recent reports have indicated that skill shortages will persist, forming a constant backdrop to hiring challenges and a notable shift is taking place in the way clients approach hiring. They are becoming more selective, setting higher standards for recruitment, and are displaying a tendency to be cautious, occasionally changing their preferences midway through the hiring process.
We saw a great example of this with a client recently - despite their urgent need for employees, they opted not to hire an individual whose salary exceeded that of their team members with similar experience. This highlights the growing selectiveness and specific benchmarks that clients are imposing in their hiring decisions.
On the flip side, candidates are approaching job opportunities with a newfound hesitancy. In a departure from the previous focus on attractive pay checks and exciting projects, candidates are now prioritising stability and certainty in their job searches. This shift reflects a broader trend in the workforce, where individuals are placing greater emphasis on the reliability and security offered by potential employers.
These observations point to a complex hiring landscape characterised by an increasing ASI and a persistent skills shortage. While the demand for talent remains high, both clients and candidates are adapting to this dynamic environment. This delicate balancing act between supply and demand underscores the evolving nature of the employment landscape.
-Anna Roussos, Founder & Director of ROUSSOS