Hiring Intentions Up as Job Market Confidence Grows

New York — June 4

America’s hiring managers and recruiters remain ready to hire, according to a national survey conducted by Dice Holdings Inc., a provider of specialized websites for professional communities.

Just more than half of hiring managers (52 percent) plan to hire more professionals in the second half of 2013 than they did in the first half, the survey said. That’s an improvement from six months ago, when 46 percent said they planned to increase hiring in the first six months of 2013, according to the survey.

While hiring managers read of the economy’s impact on their business is essentially unchanged, there are other signs of swelling confidence in the job market from professionals.

The most encouraging indication of tipping the job market toward more activity, 39 percent of hiring managers and recruiters said the number of voluntary departures at their companies or their clients’ companies has increased this year. That is a jump from 32 percent of respondents who reported increasing quits just six months ago, according to the survey.

When asked why they believe candidates are choosing to leave their current positions, hiring managers most frequently cited increased salaries, better career opportunities elsewhere, and better job title or promotion.

That search for more money is showing itself during the recruiting process, with 42 percent of hiring managers and recruiters noting that candidates are asking for more money. This compares to just 36 percent of respondents who answered the same way in late 2012.

However, more employers are attempting to stave off employee departures, with 31 percent of respondents reporting they are seeing more counteroffers from existing employers or making those offers themselves. That compares to slightly more than a quarter (26 percent) of hiring managers and recruiters that saw counteroffers on the rise six months ago.

The renewed confidence among professionals could be due in part to some resolution to the large questions that were looming six months ago, as hiring managers and professionals were waiting to see the full impact the election, sequestration and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act would have on their businesses and careers, the survey suggests.

On sequestration, nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of those surveyed said the mandatory spending cuts had no impact on their business, with another 15 percent suffering a direct effect and 21 percent acknowledging an indirect impact.

Of those companies that did see consequences tied to sequestration, the most popular answers were slowdown in new business activity, a slowdown in new hires and layoffs of some existing employees.

That said, more than half (52 percent) of those affected by sequestration said any adjustments they need to make are still being assessed, with just 10 percent noting those changes were behind their company.

When asked about the Affordable Care Act, more than half (51 percent) of the respondents with less than 50 employees said their company was not making plans to keep headcount below 50 employees because of the implementation of the new health care law, as compared to 17 percent of small company respondents that were taking steps to stay under that level, the survey said.

However, when looking at shifts in the types of hiring in 2013, employers, regardless of size, are anticipating using more contractors, temporary staffing and part-time employees than six months ago.

Source: Dice Holdings Inc.