8 recruitment trends and predictions for 2023

Read these and be better informed for the year ahead.

Having your finger on the pulse and a vision of what’s happening next is important at any time, however, looking forward and understanding the state of the nation feels even more paramount as we begin a new year. For all of the reasons we are acutely aware of, the world we live and work within can change in an instant, this is no more relevant than in the digital world of the connected consumer journey.

Working closely with global brands and the talent within these businesses, we are closer than most to the people and companies that are empowering the fast paced world of digital, marketing and commerce. The nature of our business is to understand the trends, changes and opportunities within our customers’ universe.

With that in mind and with our ear to the ground, here are our top eight predictions for the recruitment market in 2023.

Niche talent will still be in demand and command premium salaries

Professionals with a specialist range of skills or expertise in a particular area will continue to be in high demand in 2023 as we see them command even higher salaries. Some specific skills we expect to see high demand for next year include data insights, analytics and those with specialist product knowledge.

Salaries will fall 10-15% as organisations tighten their budgets

Pay increases have been at an optimum in 2021-2022 with many people achieving salary increments in the 20-30% range and across all areas of digital and marketing. For 2023, with the exception of very niche areas, we expect this to fall 10-15% as clients tighten budgets in-line with market conditions.

Corporates will scale down their teams

Corporate companies are already starting to rationalise teams and we expect this to continue in 2023. Falling sales figures combined with the increased costs of production and fulfilment have required businesses to cut costs accordingly. The first knock on effect will be reductions in head count and scaled down team sizes. For example, investor backed tech businesses, many of which are unprofitable businesses in the early years of trading, will need to reduce costs and headcount. Getting investment is a lot harder now compared with even 6-12 months ago, the bottom line is being scrutinised with profit and cost at the heart of the equation.

Opportunities for those leading the sales charge

Following on from my previous prediction and at the other end of the scale, those companies with a healthy balance sheet and sales resilience will continue to prosper in 2023. This year poses the opportunity for flourishing businesses to not only pick up great talent but potentially at reduced premiums to the summer of 2022 when the market peaked.

Benefits and incentive packages may not be so attractive

As the jobs market stabilises, in 2023 we expect organisations to review the benefits and long-term incentive plans we’ve seen on offer in 2021-2022. Many brands are grappling with reduced sales and rising costs, therefore the attractive packages and equity options of the previous two years may not be so available.

2023: a tale of two halves

As we enter 2023, we expect the market to reach rock bottom and continue in this vein until the second half or 2023. The prediction is then that we will see the green shoots of the summer and businesses reinvesting in key hires and experience an up-turn for the remainder of 2023.

Rise in demand for contractors

In 2023 we believe demand for talent on a day rate, contract basis will rise as clients switch from strategic long-term permanent hires, to the requirement for shorter term tactical and strategic talent to fulfil key projects and business requirements. Contractors and freelancers that can hit the ground running and achieve key objectives and goals will offer greater value.

Reduction in demand for top talent

Demand for talent at the upper end of the market will reduce in 2023. £100k+ roles in particular as the number of back fill roles reduces, will be affected. Senior talent is more likely to stay in their current roles with a ‘better the devil you know’ attitude and wait for the market to pick up at a time when most companies have an established senior management team.

My overall opinion is that although the market will slightly retract in the first half of 2023 those businesses that are flourishing will still very much attract great talent.  The continued upturn in the demand for specialism and niche skills will be music to the ears of those on a day rate. Individuals that drive projects and business requirements will also be in demand. There are many positives however a considered and informed approach to the next 12 months will pay dividends. We’ll be sure to review these in a year’s time and I for one am excited for what 2023 brings!

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