Firms still taking on employees, though outlook not as bright, finds Regus Business Confidence Index
Global businesses are still taking on staff, even though their views on economic growth are not as positive as they were a year ago as over half (64%) of companies say they plan to increase headcount in the next two years. This is despite a downturn in the Regus Business Confidence Index which has slipped 11 over the last six months, down to 114. Revealing the changing structure of employment, hiring intentions show a strong emphasis on freelancers, graduates and remote workers – as firms seek competitive edge now and growth in the months to come.
• The proportion of global companies reporting revenue growth (51%) and rising profits (42%) has virtually flatlined, increasing only one percentage point compared to six months ago; and over a third of companies (36%) have pushed back their expectations for recovery to the second half of 2012;
• Interestingly, companies trading internationally show a higher business confidence index score (120) compared to those with mainly domestic markets (110)
• Nevertheless, over half of companies (64%) intend to recruit new staff over the next two years. Signaling a clear move toward more flexible working practices, 49% say they plan to hire more freelance staff and 40% will employ more remote workers in 2011-2012
Regus spokesperson comments: “The report finds that, six months on from a rosy start to 2011, the global outlook has suffered a clear reverse. The proportion of companies reporting revenues and profit growth has close to stalled and expectations for the full momentum of recovery have slipped yet again and are now set for the second half of 2012. However, national business sentiment and activity does not seem to be unduly affected, with businesses actively investing in their most valuable asset: people power.
“With the OECD and ILO reporting that more than 22 million new jobs a year need to be created to return to pre-crisis levels of employment, freelance and remote working are becoming an increasingly popular solution to increase headcount while remaining flexible and rapidly scalable. In addition to this, by taking advantage of solutions already available on the market it is possible for even very small operations to establish a low-risk presence in their target markets without making lengthy premises or equipment commitments and allowing them to expand or withdraw depending on volatile market conditions.”
The Regus Business Confidence Index
In every edition, the Regus Business Tracker report presents an updated Business Confidence Index. This index is a measurement formed on an aggregate of positive and forward-looking statements combining year-to-date revenue and profit trends with views on the expected economic upturn in the coming months and aims to provide businesses with a single point of reference of the survey’s key findings. Its benchmark average was set at 100 in the first edition of the Regus Business tracker in September 2009.
Regus is the world’s largest provider of flexible workplaces, with products and services ranging from fully equipped offices to professional meeting rooms, business lounges and the world’s largest network of video communication studios. Regus enables people to work their way, whether it’s from home, on the road or from an office. Customers such as Google, GlaxoSmithKline, and Nokia join hundreds of thousands of growing small and medium businesses that benefit from outsourcing their office and workplace needs to Regus, allowing them to focus on their core activities.
Over 900,000 customers a day benefit from Regus facilities spread across a global footprint of 1,200 locations in 550 cities and 90 countries, which allow individuals and companies to work wherever, however and whenever they want to. Regus was founded in Brussels, Belgium in 1989, is headquartered in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information please visit: www.regus.com