• 51% of employers surveyed will be increasing staff numbers
  • Hiring activity balanced across front line, operational and back office functions
  • Wages growth the key business concern for the first quarter

Employers in Hong Kong are hiring evenly across business functions during the first quarter, according to the latest Michael Page Employment Index.

There is an ongoing focus on revenue generating roles with 36% of respondents recruiting professionals for front line positions. Hiring activity is also strong in operational (32%) and back office (25%) functions to meet the increasing requirement to support front line staff.

“Hong Kong will see strong jobs growth in the first quarter with more than half of the companies we surveyed planning to increase staff numbers. The professional skills shortage is intensifying and the attraction and retention of top performers will become more challenging as the year progresses,” said Mr Anthony Thompson, Managing Director of Hong Kong and Southern China.

Almost half of the companies surveyed anticipate staff turnover to increase in the first quarter. Staff retention is already a major focus for 31% of respondents, with the preferred retention strategies being performance-based rewards, training and development and salary reviews.

Some 49% of the companies surveyed have recently increased their payroll budgets in order to retain their top performers.

“The challenge for employers is to manage escalating payroll costs while capitalising on opportunities for revenue growth. It is a delicate balancing act and little wonder that our survey respondents nominated wages growth as their key business concern for the first quarter,” said Mr Thompson.