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Hiring Priorities and Wage Inflation Amidst Global Economic Uncertainty in Q3 2022


Wage Inflation


“For the balance of 2022 and 2023, the company will focus on hiring on engineering, technical, and other critical roles,”-  Google CEO  Sundar PichaiGoogle Slows Hiring

Big Tech’s Hiring  Slowdown in 2022

Google’s  Sundar Pichai isn’t the only CEO placing a laser-like focus on essential engineering recruiting and retention. When the uber giants of Big Tech like Google and Microsoft slow down or “streamline” hiring for the first time it definitely makes the news. Microsoft calls it “restructuring” but it amounts to the same thing. They’re all still hiring, just not all the way across to the administrative side of the board.

As Tom Gimbel, chief executive officer of the Chicago-based employment agency LaSalle Network explained to CPA Practice Advisor concerning the 2022 summer hiring environment, 

“Every company still needs people but they don’t need hundreds of people. They’re being choosier about who they’re hiring than they were six months ago.”

As always, it’s a great time to be an engineer. 

The emphasis in both cases is on a common Big Tech hiring strategy that focuses on recruiting and retaining the top engineering and technical talent deemed critical  by a wide range of industries. When it comes to Big Tech dealing with the challenges of recruiting the top engineers, to paraphrase Groucho Marx, “Big tech and 20,000 other guys.” 

The looming recession, 4-decades high record inflation, high gas and energy prices, and uncertainty about a lingering slowdown in construction starts into late summer are all red flags for stormy times ahead. As companies batten down the hatches wage increases may have peaked for smaller organizations as cash concerns take priority, which brings us to one of the top FAQ’s of Q3 2022:

Wage Increase

Have Wage Increases Hit Their Peak? 

“We’ve reached a level of wage inflation where employers are going to say, ‘I’ve done as much as I can. ‘My consumers and customers aren’t going to accept me passing these costs on any further, so we need to start to mitigate them.’” Jonas Prising, CEO-ManPowerGroup

There’s nothing like uncertainty to keep a workforce in motion from one sector to another, but by the 3rd quarter of 2022 there are a few points that we can be certain of when it comes to the business environment going into Q4 and 2023. 

  • The Federal Reserve will continue to raise interest rates incrementally. It’s now just a question of “ How much will it take to rein in 40-year high inflation? Raising interest rates tends to dampen both individual consumer spending and overall business activity.
  • Hefty salary increases may have reached a peak at smaller firms. Even larger enterprises are at the limit of passing on inflated costs for labor and supplies to their customers. 
  • Engineering and technical positions are always essential roles and the highest hiring priority. Even during an overall hiring slowdown in other fields the leading heavy industry companies at Resource Erectors offer 6-figure compensation and competitive benefits packages to the top qualified professionals. 

China’s Private Vs. State Hiring Dilemma With Generation Z

The US isn’t alone when it comes to the shifting workforce pressures of 2022. In China, the fallout from draconian covid lockdowns are taking their toll on big tech and other private sector companies. There, potential young candidates from China’s highly touted, most educated ever, Generation Z, those highest-tech graduates, are scared off by the state-mandated shutdowns that suddenly wiped out so many privately held businesses.

Despite the modern legend that China’s over-achieving students have unlimited corporate potential with ambition and productivity to match, this bunch doesn’t seem to be the generation Z to set the industrial world on fire for communism as it were. In an uncertain economy they’re more interested in job security than high salaries and bonuses for innovation. 

12 million college and tech school graduates are entering China’s job market this year, as private companies bear the brunt of communist party regulatory crackdowns on real estate and the private education sector. “Hardline” Covid-induced layoffs propelled unemployment among 16- to 24-year-old urbanites to an astounding 19.3%, more than twice the rate for that age demographic in the US. 

One of China’s jaded 3-time big tech interns explained in China’s Gen Z Is Dejected, Underemployed and Slowing the Economy;

Employment in China

“People who are going to work for Internet companies are all worrying about themselves because they feel like they could be fired any time,” -Hu Xiaoyue

The state-held sector in China employs about 80 million people and that figure could grow by as much as 2 million on a net basis this year. Lu Feng, a labor economist at Peking University explained why relying on the state hiring more to pick up the employment slack won’t suffice. “But compared with total demand for jobs, it’s still relatively small,” he said. “We still need private firms to hire.”

To meet its employment goals, economists say China needs GDP to increase between 3% and 5% this year, but realistic economists are predicting closer to 4 percent and that’s if covid shutdowns don’t get out of hand. 

So much for innovation, entrepreneurship and economic growth for Generation Z in China. Like 39% of her responding comrades, Hu Xiaoyue, a 24-year old with a masters degree prefers the stability of working for the State to the risks and rewards of private enterprise. 

 After watching interview opportunities evaporate among the country’s privately held companies, Hu  landed a position at a research institute within the state-owned China Telecom Corp. “The working hours of my future job will be 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and the workload will be quite light. Internet companies are too consuming,” she said.

About Resource Erectors

We bring decades of specialized heavy industry hiring experience to the table to ensure that  your company can weather the storms of an uncertain economy. We recruit and place the top professional candidates in diverse industrial sectors including concrete, aggregates, civil construction, bulk materials, gypsum, industrial minerals, mining, and more. 

If you’re a highly qualified heavy industry professional, Resource Erectors has exciting career enhancing opportunities in engineering, data analytics, mobile fleet management, sales, logistics , safety, and more so don’t hesitate to contact us when it’s time to make your move up the industrial career ladder.

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