The demand for HR talent has increased since the middle of 2021, as the market has seen huge growth with the number of open positions outnumbering the supply of qualified candidates. The initial impact of COVID-19 resulted in fewer vacancies in the HR space as companies across the board - multinationals and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) - paused recruitment and waited to assess its impact on business. The market has significantly improved since early 2021 and now that remote working practices have been shown to run smoothly, employers have more confidence to hire.
The shift to dealing with skill shortages happened quickly, leading to the attraction and retention of employees becoming the top priority for HR in 2022. While certain sectors, such as tech, have seen a both recruitment freezes and layoffs in the past four months, attraction and retention of talent will remain a priority for unaffected sectors throughout 2023. With talk of a recession gaining momentum across Europe, a lot can happen in the next twelve months. However the HR function has an opportunity to position itself as a strategic player during this time. In an unpredictable market, HR can work to support business success and meet the challenges of growth, performance, innovation, employability, predictability, and agility, by taking into account industry trends and managing employees and manager expectations during this time.