Ireland, Norway and the U.K. Rank as Top Spots for Talent

March 6, 2019 – Ireland, Norway and the U.K. are the top labor markets across the globe for sourcing, hiring and retaining workforce skills, according to the ManpowerGroup Solutions Total Workforce Index 2019. In an increasingly complex global market, access to skilled talent is a priority for organizations looking to build or grow their business, the report said.

The Total Workforce Index uses Big Data combined with expert insight to compare workforce potential across markets by evaluating the skills availability, cost efficiency and workforce productivity of both permanent and contingent labor sources. It uses a proprietary formula that can be customized to respond specifically to an organization’s most pressing workforce priorities. These can range from sector specific skills challenges and the impact of shifting regulations to flexible scheduling and changing wages by location across sectors from oil and gas to IT and manufacturing.

“The emergence of new skills and new talent pools, together with fresh ways to work and get work done, mean companies have more options than ever when identifying where to locate or expand their operations,” said Becky Frankiewicz, president of ManpowerGroup North America. “Whether the priority is a specific tech skilled workforce or setting up a new call center, we can use the index to provide companies with data that helps them to make better and faster strategic decisions. With this right combination of data and insights, organizations can execute a precise talent strategy to meet their unique business needs.”

The ManpowerGroup said that employers seeking certain skill-sets when hiring in developing markets have an increased investment. Results from the Total Workforce Index said that over time, increased hiring activity leads to tighter regulation and higher cost. This year, as in past years, however, the company has identified several emerging markets that still offer high availability of skilled workers.

“As workforce markets enter the top rankings for their region or category for the first time, they offer a short-term workforce opportunity to capitalize on limited competition,” said Ms. Frankiewicz. “This year, the index also suggests that while base wages remain the largest component of total labor costs, they are no longer the majority of those expenditures. Globally, ManpowerGroup Solutions has observed increased payrolling taxes, insurance costs, and other statutory burdens that, when coupled with turnover and training, often exceed base wages themselves.”

Individual factors, such as average wages, are critical to monitor, but should not be taken out of context within their category. “More and more, markets show increased costs relative to another country based on non-wage factors as opposed to wages themselves,” said Ms. Frankiewicz. “Global workforce engagement and productivity remain on the rise, despite increasing retirement of aging workforces. At a market level, the index tracks the rate at which workers are aging out and entering the workforce in various skilled categories to enable organizations to better balance the sustainability of their global operations.”

While there is much speculation on how employers should adjust strategies to accommodate generational trends within their workforce, the index focuses on the quantitative impact that these demographics have on a business at a market level. “While the index is intended to support all organizations in their workforce planning, it is important to note that how an employer prioritizes the factors tracked by the index is of critical importance to determining which countries represent the greatest opportunity for their hiring initiatives,” said Ms. Frankiewicz.

Regional Rankings

  • APAC –Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore are the top markets for business development in the APAC region and globally. Hong Kong and Singapore rank highly for larger talent pools and support of flexible working conditions versus markets with new tax policies and labor laws.
  • AMERICAS –The U.S. and Canada claim the top two rankings in the Americas region because of their mature workforces, followed by Chile, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Across South and Central America, micro market shifts and significant legislative changes can increase hiring complexity. The lowest ranked countries across the TWI globally are also in the Americas: Brazil, Honduras, Bolivia and Venezuela. Only the U.S. and Canada rank in the global top 10, at fourth and sixth respectively.
  • EMEA –The top five ranked countries in the region are the UK, Ireland, Estonia, United Arab Emirates and Israel. All of these countries bar Israel rank in the top 10 globally. Increasing access to education and investment in skills development have contributed to the workforce potential across the region.

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor; and Andrew W. Mitchell, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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