Staff levels steady

The report also looks at how perceptions about the economy are impacting employers’ hiring decisions. quarter of employers believe they now have more stringent assessment processes in place to ensure they secure the right candidate. However, results indicate that these processes involve steps like more senior involvement in the selection process and higher number of interviews with preferred candidates – neither of which have been shown to automatically translate into better hiring decisions.

Six out of 10 employers now have more stringent headcount approvals and third are experiencing slower decision-making around new hires.

Hudson New Zealand’s executive general manager Roman Rogers says most employers started the year with plans of incremental, rather than aggressive headcount growth. “So these results aren’t surprising.”

He adds that justifying the return on investment of new employee is vital. “Employers have firm focus on driving productivity and high performance and there is certainly more pressure to get hires right.” 

More than half of employers (56.5 percent) believe that the current economic environment has impacted the skills needed to be high performer. 

Openness to change (76.2 percent) is seen as key skill needed to succeed, followed by resilience to stress and not being deterred by setbacks (61.2 percent).

Employers continue to focus too strongly on the technical skills required for role making it difficult to identify high performers with the right skills for today’s environment. In fact, 62 percent of employers focus on technical skills, with only third (32 percent) spending time on behavioural attributes and only six percent measuring motivational fit.

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