Net hiring sentiment dipped four percentage points (pp) to 26.2 per cent in June as the latest Hudson Report: Employment Trends reveals an increasingly stable hiring outlook.
The result follows four consecutive quarters of employment growth and a six year high in March.
“Overall, Hudson’s latest figures paint a picture of consistent employment stability,” says Roman Rogers, Executive General Manager, Hudson New Zealand.
“While net sentiment has reduced, nearly two-thirds (62.9 per cent) of employers intend to keep headcount steady this quarter and confidence levels across a range of indicators remain largely balanced.
“Employers are not shedding talent, but holding on to it and this tells us they’ve been successful in attracting talent during the past six months and are now executing on strategy in order to meet productivity goals and targets.”
Additionally, the number of employers looking to maintain contractor headcount is at its highest level in five years, with overall net contractor hiring sentiment at 12.3 per cent, representing the general health of the hiring landscape.
“Traditionally, the first thing we see when employers are taking cost cutting measures is that contractors are stripped out, leaving very lean teams,” Rogers adds.
“What we’re seeing now are employers feeling very comfortable about their contractor and permanent headcount, highlighting overall hiring confidence.”
On the topic of technology, the largely flat hiring sentiment in Lower North Island has been affected by the public sector end of financial year, down 0.8pp to 22 per cent.
That said, ICT transformation remains a focus for Government in the year ahead and roles in demand are those specifically linked to change management planning and implementation.
Nationwide, Technical & Engineering is the profession with the strongest permanent positive hiring sentiment (37.5 per cent), followed by Human Resources (33.6 per cent), Financial Services (27.9 per cent), Information, Communication & Technology (25.3 per cent), Office Support (18.2 per cent), and Accounting & Finance (9.4 per cent).
Sentiment in Information, Communication & Technology has dropped across both permanent, down 10.4pp, and contract hires, down 3.3pp, with net 16.7 per cent hiring managers intending to increase contract headcount.
“Government utilisation of technology vendors is significant, with many leading international vendors partnering with smaller local third party technology companies to deliver specialised services,” Rogers adds.
“This continues to buoy consulting and technology companies to hire permanent and contracting staff as needed, allowing the public sector to maintain FTE headcount levels through normal turnover without major growth.”