The pandemic and war in Ukraine have led to cost pressures that have triggered demand for high wages, in turn contributing to a very competitive candidate market. Companies are trying to outdo each other to attract the limited number of jobseekers with significantly higher salaries, better benefits packages, and flexible working.
Professionals have higher expectations for their working lives now. No longer satisfied with just a competitive salary, those prepared to leave a secure role and take the leap into the unknown demand proper compensation in the form of benefits, bonuses, opportunities to work from home, career progression and job security.
To ensure continued prosperity, employers should embrace requirements from jobseekers, where possible – essentially putting people before profit.
There are several ways business leaders can make their company more attractive. Improving employer branding is a must – consider whether your company’s image truly reflects its ethos – is it modern, inclusive, welcoming, forward-thinking, and does it have a great employee value proposition? Examine what people are saying about the company online – are negative reviews being investigated or ignored? Is there high turnover in some departments – why is this? Are regular staff satisfaction surveys being carried out and acted upon?
Reed carried out a survey of 298 workers in Hungary at the end of 2022, which revealed some surprising disparities between what employees are receiving as benefits, and what they actually want. For example, an annual salary increase (58%) was unsurprisingly top of the list of desires as the cost of living soars, followed by an SZÉP fringe benefits card (55%) and flexible hours (54%). Yet, what respondents currently receive differs significantly: an SZÉP card (37%), computer usage (32%), and performance bonus (20%) ranked highest – while flexi hours (18%) and annual salary increase (14%) fell in fourth and fifth place.
Bosses in Hungary should also be more open to remote working options for professionals based outside cities, by offering more home office options. Our survey highlighted 69% of respondents would prefer a hybrid working style, while 24% would like fully remote work.
High demand for professionals is pushing employers to rethink their expectations, with many more open to hiring inexperienced people with specific soft skills, then training them to fit the company’s needs.
Refined and reduced recruitment and selection processes have been key to acquiring new talent, along with an awareness of changing market trends – this will continue in 2023. Experienced recruitment consultants can help employers with this, advising business leaders about the changing labour market, and able to contact key professionals who may not be actively looking for new opportunities, but open to suggestions.
Another option to consider is temporary recruitment, which is becoming more popular as it gives employees flexibility and allows companies to test professionals before committing to a permanent offer.
Above all, employees want to feel appreciated and valued for their work, and properly rewarded in these challenging times.
Get the Hungary salary guide 2023
Reed’s salary guide for Hungary explores the changes, key trends and predictions across the most popular and emerging roles in the country – download our free 2023 Hungary salary guide now. It can be used to inform policies, practices, and decisions about career next-steps, and as a tool to calculate salaries for the coming year and beyond across a range of sectors.