Unemployment: Hong Kong is gradually recovering from the post-Covid period, unemployment has steadily fallen from 7.2% in February 2021 to 4.5% in September., a new 14-months low. While this is still a relatively high comparing to under 3% unemployment rate back in 2019, the government is also optimistic that the labour market will further improve with the disbursement of the electronic consumption voucher from August 2021. Recent stats also shown that Hong Kong retail sales climbed for the seventh straight month and rose by 11.9% from a year earlier which also indicates that the retail market is recovering.
Hiring trends: IT remains the hottest industry, the industry is facing a growing talent shortage in data science/analytics, cloud and cybersecurity. The demand for IT talents is so huge that companies are starting to recruit overseas in countries like India and Philippines or simply turn to IT outsourcing service providers. Shipping & logistics follows closely after IT, while a lot of companies benefited from the Covid situation over the last 24 months, they are also facing the uncertainty of supply-chain challenges in countries with strict lock-down protocols, and insufficient labour supply. According to a HR survey, 65% of companies indicated the main reason for increased headcounts is company expansion and this is followed by growth in new roles (32%), which are strong indicators that the economy is in a expansion stage.
Emigration and its impact upon the labour market: Almost 90,000 Hong Kong citizens left the city over the last 12 months, according to the latest statistics. Hong Kong also experienced a significant drop of 1.2% in population, an alarming situation for the labour market. Industries like banking & investment, accounting, legal and compliance, media & marketing are facing the an exodus of mid-level to senior professionals emigrate from the city, and potentially creating a talent shortage in many organisations over the next few years. While a mass emigration may bring short term instability to organisations, some see this as an opportunity for high potential younger generation to be fast-tracked along the organisation ladder. Gemini also expects to see a growing demand in talent development and career pathing solutions over the next few years to counter the negative impact brought by this emigration, maintaining an agile, engaged and competent workforce will be a vital task for HR professionals. For more info on HR digitisation, please continue to read the article below!