Survey: Hiring Tops Post-Recession Employee-Related Priorities for Executives

MENLO PARK, CA — A recent survey suggests hiring new workers will be the top priority for many employers as the economy improves. When asked where they most likely will boost spending when the recovery occurs, nearly one in three senior executives (31 percent) said he or she plans to hire additional staff. Twenty-one percent of respondents plan to give their teams raises.

The survey was developed by Robert Half Finance & Accounting, the world’s first and largest specialized financial recruitment service. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with 150 senior executives from the nation’s 1,000 largest companies.

Executives were asked, “In which one of the following areas are you most likely to increase spending when the economy improves?” Their responses:

Hiring additional staff   31%
Increasing salaries for current employees   21%
Increasing or reinstituting bonuses   15%
Investing more in employee training   9%
Enhancing employee benefits   5%
Other   1%
None, will not increase spending   16%
Don’t know/no answer   __2%

“Improving business conditions will result in demand for skilled professionals to assist with initiatives that were placed on hold during the recession,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half International and author of Human Resources Kit For Dummies®, 2nd Edition (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.). “Companies that made deep personnel cuts will need to rebuild their teams to capitalize on future opportunities.”

Messmer pointed out that employers also should invest in their existing workforce to reduce the chance of losing top performers. “Managers need to reward those team members who shouldered the burden during tough times,” he said. “If financial incentives are not an option, firms should look for other ways to recognize staff, such as providing flexible work schedules or granting additional vacation days.”

Founded in 1948, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, a division of Robert Half International, has more than 360 locations worldwide and offers online job search services at

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