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"The labour market remained tight everywhere" - Interjview with Sandor Baja (Randstad)

2024-03-06

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What are the recruitment trends for the 3 countries (CZ-HU-RO) in 2024?

International uncertainty, high inflation in 2023, the demographic situation, migration are the key words in the region which will also have an impact on recruitment.

What are the similarities and differences between these 3 countries?

There are many similarities and many differences between these countries. Overall, their convergence with Western Europe is steady, even if they are in a phase shift. Labour efficiency is below the German level (68 dollars per hour), Czechs produce 46 dollars an hour, Romanians 38 dollars, Hungarians 35 dollars an hour in purchasing power parity today (eurostat). The difference is due to the different specialisation of the 3 countries. The Czech Republic, for example, has more research and development. Romanians have more IT search, which represents a higher added value. As the population is shrinking in all three countries ( as it is in all EU countries), the labour market is tight. The Czechs are not so open to working abroad, and in fact they have hundreds of thousands of Slovaks and Ukrainians employed, which is normal as the language barrier is not high. Romanians and Hungarians like to go to Western Europe, but they are being replaced by a large number of non-EU guest workers.

What are the most popular profiles by country?

Engineers, skilled and semi-skilled workers in manufacturing and production are needed everywhere. In Hungary and Romania, there is a great need for IT specialists, while marketing and law are not much in demand anywhere.

How are the candidates different in these 3 countries?

Salary is the most important factor everywhere, and the importance of work-life balance has declined slightly. The importance of ED&I has also been put on the map. What are the recruitment obstacles by country? The labour market remained tight everywhere, with companies cutting down at a very low rate despite the uncertainty. Of course, this year's biggest hit is the huge salary demand from candidates.

How is inflation managed in these 3 countries?

Last year, the 3 countries occupied 3 medal places on the not so proud podium of inflation. Workers rightfully expect employers to compensate for inflation. The challenge is that the revenue outlook for this year shows no growth for half of the companies, which limits the budget that can be spent on salaries. This leads to high wage tensions, which could fuel employee fluctuation this year.

What are the search channels by country?

Of course, all channels are used everywhere, but it is interesting to note that there are differences, for example in Hungary job portals are the most popular, while in the Czech Republic internal recommendation is the most important channel.

How do the generations in the three countries differ on work-related issues?

It is very interesting how Romanians are much more ambitious in all their generations compared to Hungarians, Czechs or the European average, which foreshadows their economic success. Work is an important factor in the lives of Hungarians, more important than the international average for all generations except Generation Z, which casts a dark shadow over the Hungarian sky. It is very interesting that the ambition of Czechs, especially in the older age group, is at a record low.

Thank you for the anwers Sandor Baja, the Managing Director Czech, Hungary, Romania of Randstad!