Despite US Department of Labor data pointing toward two consecutive months of contracting payrolls, demand for talent at the top of the employment market continues to expand according to ExecuNet's Recruiter Confidence Index (RCI), a leading indicator for the executive employment market.
According to March's survey of 118 executive recruiters, 52 percent are confident or very confident the executive employment market will improve during the next six months — up slightly from 51 percent last month.
Nearly three-in-four recruiters (72 percent) expect at least a 10-percent increase in search assignments during this period of time.
"Economic uncertainty has not put executive job growth on hold," says Mark Anderson, president of ExecuNet. "While demand for executive talent may be increasing at a slower pace than it was just one year ago, recruiting and retaining effective leaders remains a challenge for most companies."
Additionally, ExecuNet's benchmark Search Firm Hiring Index gained six percentage points in March's poll, suggesting that employers are continuing to hire new executive leadership despite the extended volatility of the financial markets.
Exactly 50 percent of executive search firms plan to hire additional professional staff over the next three months to keep pace with corporate demand for senior-management talent.
Introduced in May 2003, the Recruiter Confidence Index is based on a monthly survey of executive recruiters conducted by ExecuNet.
Independent analysis of the RCI has confirmed it is a leading indicator of projected executive recruitment activity.
Robyn Greenspan, Editor-in-Chief ExecuNet
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