Published on 29th September 2023
The global economy is expected to face a period of limited growth in 2024. Economists from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) suggest that the growth will be lower than the previous year. In labour markets, one of the most pressing challenges remains talent shortages. This issue has been ongoing for several years and is not limited to specific regions. The scarcity of skilled workers remains a significant hurdle for business growth.
To stay afloat, employers are increasingly adopting skill-based hiring practices. This approach focuses on specific skills rather than traditional qualifications, such as degrees or years of experience. This shift is seen as a way to access a broader talent pool – a strategy that also helps bringing more diversity and inclusion in the workforce. In particular, closing off the gender gap by increasing women’s employment, has become a priority. Benefits, such as parental leave, flexible working arrangements, and remote work options, can play a crucial role in this respect.
Another key driver for the economy and labour markets in 2024 will be the green transition. Several policy initiatives, such as the European Green Deal, will have significant impact on labour markets with the growth of green industries leading to the emergence of new occupations and job opportunities. But traditional roles will also be affected by the transition to a more sustainable economy, hence requiring some reskilling there as well.
Finally, technology will continue to push labour market developments in 2024. Staffing companies have already embraced the potential of technology, in particular Artificial Intelligence, and that trend is only here to stay. As Adam Pode, from Staffing Industry Analysts, put it, “think Man, plus Machine. AI won’t replace you but a person using AI may.”
In this economic context dominated by uncertainty, there is a definite need for agility and flexibility in labour markets. Employers must reevaluate their hiring practices, consider the importance of diversity and inclusion, and prepare for the changing landscape of the green and digital transitions. HR services companies have already started to play a strategic role in accompanying those transitions and they are ideally placed to collaborate with policymakers to address these challenges and harness the potential of emerging opportunities in the global economy.
Adam Pode joined SIA in June 2009 with overall responsibility for research for EMEA & APAC. Since then he has examined and written about the staffing industry from Australia to Zambia. Adam has spent his entire career in the research field and got his first degree from SOAS.
As Vice President at Lightcast, Marco Tucci is leading the Business Expansion and Strategic Client Relations in Europe from the company’s Milan office. His expertise spans from guiding its clients on strategic workforce planning, labour market policies and evolving trends, like green skills – that fundamentally shape the future of employment. Before joining Lightcast (formerly Emsi Burning Glass) Marco has ran for 10 years his own labour market advisory business that joined in 2012 Tabulaex – a spin-off of the University of Milano-Bicocca. As one of the shareholders and subject matter expert in the field of European Labour Markets he was influential in driving Tabulaex growth and establishing its brand across the region. In Dec 2018 Burning Glass International (that later merged with EMSI) acquired Tabulaex. Today, Marco is Senior Sales Leader within Lightcast Global Business where he also leads the company’s business operations in EMEA.