My work across Europe gives me a chance to compare and contrast the strength of different economies and associated job markets. Across Europe, there are mixed feelings as figures show that there are increased job opportunities and employment but still high levels of unemployment in certain regions and age brackets and in particular increases in public sector and not-for-profit job losses.
Monster MEI data shows that across Europe year on year growth in recruitment is at the most rapid pace seen during the current economic cycle. There are key trends across countries: industrial production related sectors led long-term growth trends; notable improvements across the financial services segment for instance; and perhaps most surprisingly, public sector, defence and community jobs across Europe have actually grown (albeit by a modest five percent from April 2010 to April 2011). But there is a clear gap opening between economies that are recovering fast and economies that are left behind.
My analysis and view is:
- Scandinavia & DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) are the fast growing economies where the recovery has outpaced expectations
- France and Benelux are following behind but with a more moderate recovery rate
- UK, Italy, Spain, Ireland, Portugal, Greece have seen very modest economic improvements and the recovery is very much uncertain
Germany remains the key winner, with extremely strong growth in recruitment in the last year, the impact of seeing long-term growth across both the private and public sectors is undeniable – in April there was a 36 percent rise in public sector jobs year-on-year and a 45 percent annual growth rate overall. Compare this to the UK, where the landscape is quite different and the impact of the budget cuts continues to pull down public sector hiring. Despite this, the UK continues to show 14 percent year-over-year growth.
The recession may be global, but the implication on employment opportunities in different markets is far from universal.