The year 2022 has begun with a tax revolution and a massive inflation. These factors, combined with an unrelenting demand for competencies, will shape the labour market in the coming months. Antal experts have identified six key trends that will significantly affect the situation of employees and employers in the near future.
Trend # 1: Tax chaos will affect the wage structure
The Polish Deal entails some of the biggest tax changes in over a decade. Antal is receiving many signals that HR professionals are struggling with the new payroll system for their employees working under both employment contracts and collaborating on a B2B basis. Conclusions as to who has gained and who has lost will be drawn after the Q1 2022.
We anticipate that in the second quarter of 2022, there will be changes to the existing pay scale in order to take into account salary adjustments. This will be influenced not only by tax changes, but also by a high inflation. Professionals and managers firmly declare that they expect employers to at least partially minimise the factors negatively affecting the value of their wages, comments Artur Skiba, CEO of Antal.
Trend # 2: Voluntary turnover will increase significantly
In the first months of the pandemic, a decrease in voluntary turnover could be observed within various organisations. Employees prioritised job security and were reluctant to take the risks associated with job changing. Over the past year, however, this trend has been gradually reversed – a large number of attractive offers tempt employees to start new recruitment processes. The perceived lower pay in case of professionals and managers in the absence of any perspective for pay rise will force them to change jobs.
We estimate that in the most dynamic sectors, such as IT or SSC/BPO, employee turnover in 2022 will reach 25%. This means that companies could lose up to one employee in four. The way to retain talent in the workplace will be to adapt to the employee expectations in terms of the size of remote work, to raise the level of wages in order to offset at least inflation and to ensure, as never before, an excellent working atmosphere, advises Sebastian Sala, director of SSC/BPO & Finance division at Antal.
Trend # 3: Companies will hire at lightning speed
The increasing competition for talent and the growing number of job offers force employers to react faster than ever. The Antal survey conducted in November 2021 shows that 25% of employers conduct 1 stage of the recruitment process and 23% conduct as many as 4 stages. This year, we estimate that a four- or three-stage recruitment processes will apply to merely one new hire in five.
Shorter recruitment processes are positive news for candidates – they will receive feedback and a concrete job offer more quickly. However, they are also more likely to receive counteroffers from their current employers. However, it's worth to approach the subject calmly; my experience shows that the decision to participate in the recruitment process in most cases is dictated by something more than the mere desire to get a higher pay – and the lack of change will frustrate sooner or later every employee – points out Izabela Banaszek, consultant at Antal SSC/BPO team.
Trend # 4: Polarisation of the desired employment forms
The growing payroll difficulties will result in less willingness to cooperate on the B2B basis. Candidates will be more likely to either opt for an employment contract or for the classic freelance path. In this case, they will be reluctant to be tied to one company, but will rather work with many organisations, choosing the most interesting and best-paid assignments or they will quickly change companies, jumping from one project to another. The dynamic market will particularly favour the latter form.
We are witnessing a steady increase in interest in working on a freelance basis. Even long-time employees of companies decide to start working on their own. This is a frequently observed model for recruiters operating within the ReX crowdstaffing network, points out Karolina Korzeniewska, ReX Project Manager.
Companies will increasingly opt for contracting services in cooperation with their permanent service providers. They will be motivated by the desire to ensure the continuity of their projects and to shift the responsibility for acquiring competencies to an external company. We have been observing this phenomenon for a long time in the IT industry; now, however, employers are also looking for such solutions in the FMCG, pharmaceutical and broadly defined business services sectors, adds Maryla Aftanasiuk-Lisiecka, Director of Antal Sales & Marketing Department.
Trend # 5: Competency transformation within organisations will continue
Companies faced with a shortage of competencies, especially in the area of new technologies, will more and more often opt for competency transformation within the current company structure instead of acquiring these skills from the market. This will allow them to better meet market demands while avoiding at the same time layoffs.
Competency transformation projects are a big challenge for companies. Such a process starts with planning what exactly the target structure should look like, and then examining the initial situation, i.e. answering the question where we are and what we have within our company. It is often an assessment of predispositions, e.g. in the area of technical skills or soft competencies, depending on the target place in the structure, and thanks to this, selecting a group of employees who will be best suited to the change process. Specially prepared assessment centre sessions help to achieve this goal. Additionally, it is useful to conduct regular workshops and meetings for employees informing them about the shape of the future structure and new responsibilities resulting from it. Then, a cycle of training and gradual introduction to new responsibilities begins, explains Fabian Pietras, Director of Antal IT Services.
Trend # 6: More dynamism in recruiting for managerial positions
The increased market demand for top managers is caused by several factors. Currently, this most often concerns situations in which the company is experiencing strong growth and the competencies of current top managers are insufficient, as if they could not keep up with the company's growth or the challenges posed by the market. The second reason is the development of companies and the expansion of the structure in new areas, for which it is necessary to employ new managers.
Among the most desired top managers, we may find purchasing and supply chain managers, sales directors (including highly demanded sales directors in the area of e-commerce), green energy managers with particular emphasis on photovoltaics, wind energy, and nuclear energy. The key are people from the CEO level, essential for further development of businesses, especially in companies in which the owners managing a large structure on their own want to hand over the reins of their businesses, join the Supervisory Board and have more time to implement their new business ideas. Investment directors and owner supervision members supporting the owners together with the management board members are also sought after. The shortage of staff on the labour market results in more and more frequent recruitment processes for managerial positions in the area of business process robotization, adds Artur Migoń, Vice President of Antal, Head of the Division responsible for Executive Search Recruitment Processes at Antal.
The above mentioned trends will have a strong impact on the current activities of employers and on candidates’ expectations. The way in which companies deal with these challenges will have a direct impact on the costs they incur in the area of human capital and, consequently, on their business efficiency.