Despite the Covid-19 pandemic continuing into the second year in 2021, Nic Sephton-Poultney, Country Manager of Robert Walters Philippines, observes, “We saw healthy hiring activity across most sectors, such as financial services, banking, technology, and commercial, digital and sales and marketing.”
“We saw some companies using their own channels and internal talent acquisition teams to hire less technical or niche roles in HR and accounting, though many would turn to partners, such as Robert Walters when they are unable to secure the right talent,” he adds.
Read on as Nic shares his expectations about the labour market in the Philippines in 2022.
Tech, financial services talent to shine in 2022
Despite business uncertainty due to the pandemic, many organisations continue to see a lot of potential in the Philippines, and have plans to establish operations here. Nic shares, “In 2021, we saw approximately 10 companies approach us for their first hires in the country. We can expect this trend to continue in 2022, where businesses setting up shop in the country will be looking to hire country managers, sales directors, and sales managers to help drive operations.”
“We can expect to see massive job flow for technology, as a lot of companies are going through digital transformations and automation. We have seen tech candidates having multiple offers at any given time, even after they have accepted a job offer. This would include niche positions, such as data engineers and developers, as well as other digital roles such as e-commerce or digital marketing in consumer and retail companies. Tech will be in very high demand in 2022.”
“We will also continue to see middle to senior-level banking positions in risk and front office to be in demand, as many financial institutions have recorded strong performances despite work-from-home arrangements. This will drive demand for professionals in financial services in the coming year,” Nic highlights.
Demand for business management, sales, tech and risk skills
The skill sets in demand are reflective of the hiring trends in 2022. “Professionals with experience in business management and sales operations will be in demand as organisations establish operations in the country and look for their first hires,” Nic points out.
“With the growth in technology expected in 2022, data engineers, developers, and professionals with skills in automation, data analytics, cloud, and 5G to be very much sought after. In the areas of financial services and banking, skills in risk, finance operations, and front office expertise will be in demand,” Nic mentions.
Advice on recruiting and retaining employees
The pandemic has shifted many professionals’ priorities. Nic explains, “Candidates today are looking for job and health security in the Philippines. When it comes to offers, we see more candidates looking at base salaries and no longer at allowances or variable bonuses like before. Companies should also note that healthcare benefits is extremely critical, and many candidates will prioritise offers from companies that provide healthcare to employees along with their dependents. Candidates may also be likely to accept an offer if the salary is slightly lesser but includes healthcare coverage for the whole family.”
Companies should note that healthcare benefits is extremely critical, and many candidates will prioritise offers from companies that provide healthcare to employees along with their dependents.
Hiring managers are also encouraged to accommodate flexibility or work-from-home arrangements, as it is a factor in both attracting and retaining employees in 2022. “We have seen many employees leave or candidates reject offers when organisations require them to work in the office with no option for hybrid or work-from-home arrangements. This is highly prevalent in the Philippines, and we can expect that to continue in 2022,” Nic says.
Exceptional high salary increments in Tech
“In 2022, employees remaining in their current organisations can expect salary increases of between 4 to 8%. Job movers can expect to receive 15 to 20% increases, though niche and technical positions can receive up to 30 or 35% increments. In particular, we have seen exceptionally high salary increments of up to 70% for job movers in tech positions because of the war for talent in the Philippines,” Nic reveals.
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