Decline In Hiring Activity Raises Concerns



A recent report has revealed that hiring activity for most industries and employment sectors was significantly low over the past few months, reflecting a stagnant labour market across the country.



Online job portal, CareerJunction recently released data on its employment insights overview for February 2023, showing a decline in hiring activity.

According to the report there was a 3% decline in hiring activity from December 2022 to January 2023 (month-on-month).

The data gathered from 5,000 of the country’s largest recruiters, agencies, and employers who advertise job positions on the CareerJunction portal revealed that there was no significant growth in hiring activity for any sector over the last three months.

Drivers for this slowdown in recruitment activity are lower demand levels for industries such as IT, Sales and Business & Management as well as Admin, Office & Support staff.

Labour consultant Tony Healy explains that employers have become cautious when it comes to recruitment after seeing the impact of the pandemic and the uncertainty of Eskom’s supply of electricity and increased interest rates.

Healy noted that some of the more traditional occupational categories are declining when it comes to demand from employers at the moment.

He adds that the reason for this is that employers are now looking at promoting multi-skilling and multitasking within the existing workforce and were trying to manage their costs.

Many have raised concerns on whether the advancement of technology is the core reason for the decline in recruitment activity as many businesses are now headed to a more digitised form of operations.

Healy says that automation has made a huge difference to many sectors adding that the growth in artificial intelligence has also attributed to these declines.

He elaborates: “In the digital design area, there is a high demand for those kinds of skills, and because of the exodus of the medical fraternity, we are seeing a high demand in the latest statistics.”

Furthermore, he advised young people or anyone who had a long runway in their career ahead of them, to pursue jobs and careers that are in high demand.

Individuals who are entering the job market for the first time are advised to look where the shortages are and then try to increase their skills and qualifications in those areas as this will make the job hunt less challenging.


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South Africa’s economy is struggling with numerous challenges, including high unemployment rates amongst the youth. This is why individuals are encouraged to pursue careers that are in demand.




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