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Cashing out: Candidates on the move this quarter

Updated: 01 Mar 2014
Candidates will be on the move this quarter after collecting their Chinese New Year bonus with higher expectations in terms of salary increments and career advancement, says recruiting expert Hays.

In their latest Hays Quarterly Report, for the January to March quarter, the recruiter found that while some candidates were concerned about moving jobs in uncertain times, most were optimistic given the improved economy and were looking to secure a position before the applicant pool begins to heat up.

“We have seen a good flow of candidates coming onto the market and looking to leave their current position now that bonuses are being paid out,” says Emma Charnock, Regional Director of Hays in Hong Kong. “Interestingly, we are also noticing more expatriate candidates looking to move to Hong Kong for new career challenges and lifestyles.

“But some employers aren’t waiting around. Instead, those keen to snap up talent much faster are offering sign-on bonuses in order to secure candidates and compensate for their annual bonus.
“Flexibility is also key this quarter as employers look at ways they can fill openings which have remained opened for some time. This is particularly evident in the legal, insurance and office support sectors.
“We have seen a greater focus on temporary or contract hires to fill the gaps or adapting requirements to match the skills available in the market.
“In office support for example, we are advising our clients to consider candidates who come with a different set of skills such as Personal Assistants or Executive Assistants and then train them up while lowering the salary band accordingly.
“In turn, candidates are welcoming this move as it allows them a career opportunity and change which would not normally be open to them. It creates a win-win situation for both the candidate and employer.”
The Hays Quarterly Report lists the skills in most demand in Hong Kong for the January to March quarter:
  • Hays Accountancy & Finance – Financial Services: Compliance and control continues to be an area of demand following increased regulations and internal governance. As a result finance professionals with experience in audit and risk assessment, internal control and compliance are sought. Also needed are experienced Financial Controllers, Finance Directors and CFOs. Accountants, Tax Managers and Senior Tax Consultants will be required to assist with tax compliance, tax returns and filings.
  • Hays Banking: Despite a quieter market, there is still a very strong demand for both credit and market risk candidates. Asset Management sales and distribution candidates, including Head of Asset Management and Asset Management Wholesale and Institutional Sales Managers are wanted to help attract cash-rich investors.
  • Hays Construction: There is still a high demand for Interior Designers specialising in corporate fit-outs, hospitality and institutional spaces. Hong Kong developers continue to build large mixed-use developments in China, focusing on the high growth tier 2 and tier 3 cities. Project Directors and mechanical, electrical and plumbing staff are sought to assist with the construction phase.
  • Hays Finance Technology: Specialists in the areas of Wealth Management, Equity Derivatives and Automated Market Making, including Business Analysts, Java Developers and C++ Developersare sought this quarter. Also needed are Front Office Developers, Project Managers and Business Consultants.
  • Hays Human Resources: Compensation & Benefits specialists are in demand as companies seek advice on remuneration packages and restructure benefits policies. Global mobility professionals are also needed as employers look at utilising internal talent and focus on restructuring packages to allow employees from abroad to look at opportunities based in Hong Kong and vice versa.
  • Hays Information Technology: C# Developers are in demand with a number of new roles being created. There is ongoing demand for skilled web-based Front End Application Developers. Within the infrastructure market skilled candidates within VOICE, WAN and cloud technologies are sought as organisations move to virtual environments. There is also a need for business and infrastructure Project Managers. 
  • Hays Insurance: Asset Management specialists, Regional Compliance Managers and Audit Managers are wanted to fill a number of available openings in the insurance sector this quarter.
  • Hays Office Professionals: Legal Secretaries, Team Secretaries and Administrative Assistants for the financial services industry are most sought after this quarter. There is a steady demand for Legal Secretaries as legal firms assess their headcount, with many displaying positive hiring intentions.
  • Hays Property: There are opportunities for Property Managers, Facility Managers and Project Managers with consultancy firms. There is still a high demand for Project Managers specialising in corporate fit-outs, re-stacks or A&A as companies seek to maximise the limited office space available in Hong Kong. Project Directors and Quantity Surveyors are in demand as are senior level Leasing and Asset Managers.
Hays Sales & Marketing: Internal Communications and Employer Branding Consultants are in high demand. In the banking sector, there is also increased demand for Event Managers and candidates with experience in Corporate Access and Digital and Social Media Marketing to manage investor events.
View the full Hays Quarterly Report at from Tuesday 10 January, 2012.
Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.
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For further information please contact Paula Tychsen,Marketing Executive – PR & Communications of Hays, on +612 8226 9739 or  
About Hays
Hays is the leading global specialist recruiting group. It is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide. It operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments.
As at 30 June 2011, Hays employed 7,620 staff operating from 255 offices in 31 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2011, Hays reported net fees of £672 million and operating profit of £114 million and placed around 60,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 190,000 people into temporary assignments. 31% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific.
Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the United Kingdom and the USA.


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