Facing a boom without workers, Australian employers deploy bonuses and raises

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SYDNEY, Nov 11 (Businesshala) – As closed borders intensify skills shortages, Australian mergers and acquisitions lawyers are in high demand, with companies offering sign-on bonuses for the first time in 15 years and almost doubling recruitment fees. It is done.

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Firms are reviewing wages twice a year and increasing base pay by up to 15% as they try to avoid losing workers amid record-high demand for industry services, said people in the hiring process .

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“I had sign-on bonuses for almost every deal in 2007 and it’s pretty much the same, and really needs more to compete for those candidates in this market,” said Belinda Fischer, a Legal industry recruiter who has increased his fee from 18% to 30% of the salary of an appointed lawyer.

The measures reflect a sense of desperation among Australian employers as a sharp increase in demand for certain services – from M&A legislation to data analytics to hospitality – goes headlong into a workforce thinned by two years of closed borders.

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For example, demand for skilled technology workers has soared as movement restrictions related to the pandemic have jolted the world into doing business online. But the shortfall is particularly pronounced in Australia, where immigration has stalled.

Job advertisements are up 54% from pre-pandemic levels, but job applications are almost as low as Australia’s economy reconfigures itself to deal with supply chain disruptions, according to job website SEEK. and many aspects need to be automated. Business.

According to recruiter Robert Half, people in areas deemed essential to changed conditions – data management, business intelligence, cyber security, talent acquisition – can expect salaries to increase by up to 20% due to demand.

“We are talking to our customers about how they can retain staff because in many ways the cost of replacement is high,” said Robert Half’s Australia director Andrew Brushfield. “If employers don’t have their backyard sorting, employees are leaving.”

He said raising wages was the main way to attract and retain employees, but the flexibility to work from home was another.

Wild Tech, the Sydney operator of cloud-based business software, is offering a $10,000 sign-on bonus for the first time because of the “difficult labor conditions they are experiencing”, said managing director Grant Wilde. “I haven’t used (sign-on bonus) that way, having worked 25 years in the technology sector.”

‘Brain drain’

Although Australia opened its borders to vaccinated citizens this month, recruiters say the difficulty of finding and keeping personnel could worsen in 2022 as workers travel abroad to shake some of the world’s longest COVID-19 lockdowns. lets see.

A spokesman for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said about 2 million of Australia’s 25 million population had postponed applying for or renewing passports since early 2020, but the number of applicants is now doubling every two months. .

“Without question we are going to see a brain drain in major markets around the world as some young people in the earlier stages of careers really try and soak up some of that suppressed demand,” said Jason Johnson Said, a recruitment for white-collar jobs.

Johnson said a fifth of executives on his books in recent months have said they would consider positions overseas rather than staying at home.

Hospitality companies in the UK, the most popular destination for Australians working overseas, are grappling with labor shortages of their own due to the country’s exit from the European Union. Nick Hare, the founder of a UK pub company that arranges industry jobs for Australians in the UK, said many are offering flights, accommodation and even European tours to Australians.

“The crowd is definitely there for the exit,” he said.

Reporting by Byron Kaye. Editing by Gary Doyle

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