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Attracting and retaining talent a key challenge in Hong Kong

Zafar Anjum | Feb. 27, 2013
Top employee retention will be a key focus for companies, according to a Robert Walters survey

Attracting and retaining talent is likely to be a key challenge for employers in 2013 in Hong Kong.

This is according to the Annual Global Salary Survey by Robert Walters, a leading specialist professional recruitment consultancy, which was launched on Tuesday (26 February).

Now in its 14th edition, the annual Robert Walters Global Salary Survey is a  comprehensive review of global recruitment trends and salary levels available.

"When looking for new opportunities, talent will seek stability, a clear career path and a company with projected growth," said Matthew Bennett, managing director for Greater China, Robert Walters. "Job rotation opportunities could help retain talent, but employers will also need to review their talent retention strategies, and/or offer competitive packages to keep their best talent."

Key findings for Hong Kong

According to the survey findings, despite challenging global market conditions in financial services, there were encouraging signs in the front office banking space in 2012.

Similarly, there was more demand for accounting & finance candidates as business process outsourcing (BPO) companies expanded. Specifically, there were open opportunities for finance, financial planning and analysis and tax and audit managers, Robert Walters said in their media statement.

There was also a rise in job levels for key account, sales, country and brand managers within the FMCG sector. Firms in the telecommunications, retail and information technology consultancy sectors hired vendors and systems integrators actively as many moved their headquarters to Hong Kong to establish an Asia Pacific hub.

Outlook for 2013

The survey pointed out that the Hong Kong economy has stabilised and is on track for a more solid recovery which will see increased hiring in Q2 and Q3.

Trade-related hiring will see an increase in 2013 due to heightened demand from the US and China. Also, China's growth will help increase the number of mainland tourists and the amount they spend which will have a direct impact on retail related industries and tourism.

Organisations will focus on operational effectiveness which will increase demand for procurement & supply chain, HR, finance and Six Sigma related candidates, said Robert Walters.

The survey foresees a steady demand for corporate governance talent in middle and back office banking.

There will be an increasing reliance on information technology contractors, in particular project management and business analysis specialists.

Financial institutions are likely to recruit experienced wealth management and private client lawyers due to the increased number of high-net-worth investors coming into Hong Kong, said Robert Walters.


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