Market Signals (Week 33)

Because of how we work when supporting our clients, we have a very uniqueglimpseinto how over 5000 Executive Search companies and almost 20 000 decision makers react – the majority of which being located in Europe; and we collect and analyze how they respond; and we observe if and what kind of trends there are to leverage them into better career management & more effective job search methods.

Before there are trends, there are signals which we usually keep to ourselves. But these are not usual times, so we decided to share those market signals by 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, only 4 countries published more job ads on LinkedIn than in Week 13: Estonia, LithuaniaLatvia & Slovenia.

Index36: 47% of the countries published more job ads in Week 33 than in Week 15, which is a -6% decrease compared to last week. Since last week, 47% of the countries saw an increase in the number of published job ads.

The European Union: Since last week, the European Union noted a significant +9.40% increase. The difference between the initial Week 17 and Week 33 was +14.33%. It has now been 7 weeks that the EU has kept the numbers above the initial level.

Winners of the week: In Week 33, the most job ads were published in DACH (+17.34% compared to Week 32). For the past 6 weeks, Baltics have been the winner of Week 15 & 33 comparison. The difference between Week 32 & 33 was +39.57%. When it comes to countries, one of the best results noted this week belongs to Serbia: +67.74% difference between Week 15 & 33. Since last week, it was Greece that experienced the biggest increase (+24.67%).

Losers of the week: Southern Europe has noted the worst results for the past few weeks. The difference between Week 15 & 33 was -20.89%. Between Week 32 & 33, the worst result was noted in Visegrad (-14.93%). Country-wise, two of the worst results since last week were noted in Finland & Croatia: -24.19% and -24.95% decrease, respectively. The worst result of Week 15 & 33 comparison belongs to Ireland: -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.

Consulting: In terms of recruiting, we’re only now getting back on track. COVID caused huge delays, and some clients have backed out. In some cases, we’ve had to freeze recruitment processes and outsourcing projects up until the end of the year.

Pharma: We’re doing very well – the pandemic has caused us absolutely no problems.

IT: Before, we were realizing all of our projects remotely, but now we’ve started combining remote work with working at the office. We’ve only been working with projects that began last year – it’s hard to say what 2021 will bring.

Pharma: We’ve decided to start internal recruitment processes for higher positions. We want to dynamically transform the sales and marketing structures, in order to adapt to the changes brought by 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 32
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