Market Signals (Week 32)

The art of interpreting signals (precursors of trends) is – and always has been – important in navigating financial markets and economies. If you are an experienced manager or executive who wants to manage their career and/or job search processes wisely, look at the signals of the job market which are inseparably embedded in the VUCA landscape of today’s world.

We usually keep the collected data to ourselves. But these are not usual times, so we decided to share our insights at the end of each week. If the country / context is important, we’ll add them. Otherwise, we’ll keep it general for confidentiality.

This is not a full version of this week’s report. View the complete presentation here:

We’ve continued reaching out to CEOs, HR Directors, investors, board members and candidates that we know personally, to take the temperature. Below you’ll find their shortened quotes in no particular order.

However, we’ll start with a KPI that gives a quite good feel of the overall trend on the job market:

Number of published job ads on LinkedIn

Note: some job ads might have been taken off LinkedIn, not because the recruitment process was put on hold or canceled, but because they are costly, especially if you have dozens of them. A company might have wanted to simply cut costs and move to more cost effective alternatives. Some local job portals are offering substantial discounts.
Initial list of 18 countriesSorted
Extended list to 38 countriesSorted
Note: the numbers are collected at the beginning of each week, on Monday afternoon. In the full version of the report you can find separate data for regions such as: Visegrad, Baltics, Northern Europe, Southern Europe, Iberia, SEE, BENELUX, DACH, Western Europe and EU.

Worth mentioning

First an overview of the indices:

Index18: This week, 8 countries published more job ads on LinkedIn than in Week 13: Estonia, Ukraine, LithuaniaLatvia, Poland, Denmark, Slovenia & Slovakia.

Index36: 53% of the countries published more job ads in Week 32 than in Week 15, which is a -3% decrease compared to last week. Since last week, 42% of the countries saw an increase in the number of published job ads.

The European Union: The EU has kept the number of published job ads above the initial level for the last 6 weeks (175,155 more job ads in Week 32 than in Week 17).

Winners of the week: Since last week, the most job ads were published in Southeastern Europe (+2.05%). The only positive results of Week 15 & 32 comparison (excluding Baltics & Visegrad, that have kept their winning status for 6 weeks in a row) were noted in Northern (+3.53%) and, again, Southeastern Europe (+1.70%). Other good news: Italy has snapped back after weeks of experiencing the worst results of all the countries and noted a +10.47% increase since last week.

Losers of the week: The worst results since last week were noted in Finland & Poland: -11.64% and -11.62% decrease respectively. Just as last week, Albania placed last in Week 15 & 32 comparison (-39.20%) and was accompanied by Ireland’s -36.48% decrease.

Collected Quotes from CEOs and HR Directors:

The vast majority of executives are with market leaders in their respective industries. By default, the board members are members of local boards; if not, well indicate the exception.

Market Research: We were heavily affected by the pandemic – we are in the red and come up short compared to other companies in our industry. Online projects are cheaper than regular ones, so we have to work more in order to reach the same results. Our clients from Telco and Finance industries have been carrying their research without interruption, but those from FMCG slowed down a bit and have only recently started to catch up.

Mechanical Engineering: Our business turned out to be resistant to CV-19except for service centers, where 20-30% of contracts with commercial clients were frozen. Unfortunately, all of our recruitment processes have been frozen since March as well.

IT Services: We sell advanced training platforms, so one might think that our business position was perfect for CV-19, and that there was an increased need for homeschooling and remote work solutions. Unfortunately, we were lacking a representative in the CEE region, which prevented us from making great profit. We couldn’t succeed without direct cooperation and establishing long-term relations.

Management Consulting / Sustainability: One of the sustainability projects that we were carrying out was frozen because all the companies withdrew. As their turnovers slowed down, the sustainability budgets were moved to different areas in order to save the businesses. Although a little short-handed, we will start the project again after summer.

Media: The cinema industry has been seriously affected. We couldn’t count on commercial revenues, as companies stopped advertising.

And a candidate quote:

Project Manager / Automotive / Brazil: My current position is safe, but I’ve been looking into similar positions in Italy, planning to relocate. Unfortunately, two recruitment processes where I got to the final round of interviews were closed because of CV-19.

Useful observations & tips for candidates from one of our contacts:

Head of Talent Acquisition / International public organization

Before CV-19, sometimes we’d have only 20 applicants for a post. Now, there’s a massive increase. For some roles it’s double the amount of candidates – for HR roles, even more! A recent posting received 50 applicants within 12 hours! I can see that online interviews are more stressful for candidates because of all the technical challenges. Consequently, their performance is different. The overall candidate experience is also different – not worse, just different.

I still see two struggles for now and beyond CV-19: to formulate proper remote working policies, and to design appropriate digital onboarding processes.

About the future: everything will depend on the success of developing a vaccine. However, there are definitely elements that are here to stay: remote work if physical presence is not required (it currently saves me 5 hours per week, 20 hours per month on commuting – why would I voluntarily want to go back?) and online interviews!

Tips for candidates:

  • Cover the basics: our ATS “enforces” as complete applications as possible. Having said that, it still surprises me that approximately 30% of the candidates still don’t get the absolute basics right!
  • Don’t apply to everything. Constant rejection affects your motivation. Keep applying to the job ads where you see a fit and don’t give up!

If you want to discuss your professional situation confidentially or if you are considering hiring Career Angels for support, contact who will personally match you with the most appropriate consultant. For efficiency, add your CV and availability for a Skype call.

If you want to contribute, email your signals to Sandra (everything will be kept confidential).

Market Signals published thus far:

Week 31
Week 30
Week 29
Week 28
Week 27
Week 26
Week 25
Week 24
Week 23
Week 22
Week 21
Week 20
Week 19
Week 18
Week 17
Week 16
Week 15
Week 14
Week 13