SEEK Employment Trends: human resources and recruitment industry growth

The human resources and recruitment industry in Australia is experiencing a phase of steady growth, as employers invest in attracting and retaining top talent to their business against the backdrop of continued growth in job listings and a tightening labour market.

Advertising for this industry has been growing in line with the general improvement in labour market conditions, experiencing a 7% increase year-on-year to December 2015. At a state level, strong year-on-year increases have occurred in Victoria (9%) and New South Wales (4%), as well as the smaller employing states of Tasmania, ACT and Northern Territory. The states with significant exposure to mining have experienced decreases, including Western Australia (8%) and South Australia (9%).

Looking at specific roles within the industry, those with the biggest year-on-year growth are remuneration and benefits (38%) and internal recruitment (36%), suggesting that as the labour market begins to tighten, more companies are in-sourcing skilled specialists to assist with the acquisition and retention of top talent.

“The costs associated with attracting new employees are well documented, so it’s not surprising that in this tightening labour market organisations are investing in people who have skills in designing remuneration and retention strategies and packages that will attract and retain their top talent,” said SEEK ANZ HR Manager, Rebecca Supierz.

“Furthermore, organisations are continuing to realise the importance of attracting culturally-aligned talent, and as that talent gets harder to find it can be valuable to have recruitment teams in-house, in turn fuelling the current rise in job ads for these professionals.”

Across the country

Latest data from SEEK shows the number of new job ads nationally rose slightly in December, up 0.2% from November 2015. Job advertising has been growing steadily over the past year, averaging monthly growth rates of 0.8%, with job advertisements over the period of October to December 8% higher than the same period a year earlier.

According to SEEK Employment Managing Director, Michael Ilczynski, this growth reflects an uptick in key business indicators toward the end of 2015. “Over the past few months, we have seen business confidence and employment hiring intentions increase and this has flowed on to an increase in jobs advertised on site.” The overall annual rise in SEEK new job ads is the result of continued strength across a wide range of industries, including healthcare and medical, trades and services, government and defence, education and training, design and architecture, retail and consumer products, and information and communication technology.

State insight

Significant state divergences in advertising remain, reflecting the differing forces impacting the Australian economy at the present time.

On a monthly basis, job advertising rose the strongest in Victoria, up 3.7% month-on-month during 2015.

Looking at the period of October to December 2015, compared with the same time a year earlier, job advertisements remain strongest in states least exposed to mining, with the Australian Capital Territory up 23.4%, Tasmania up 19%, New South Wales up 14.9% and Victoria up 11.7%.

Advertising remains relatively weak in the mining states in this period, with the Northern Territory 1.3% lower than the year earlier. Western Australia remains the weakest state with advertising 14.6% lower in this timeframe.

While advertising remains weak in South Australia, there was a 1.6% increase from November to December 2015. Despite Queensland’s exposure to mining, there are tentative signs of improvement, with advertising 4.7% higher during October to December 2015, compared to the same period in 2014.
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SEEK is the destination of choice for job-seekers and hirers in Australia, acting as the conduit between hirers looking to fill vacant roles and candidates looking for work across many and varied industries. SEEK's mission is to help people...

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