Isn’t it ironic that the phrase “2020 vision” has historically referred to the clarity of the picture ahead?
Sadly this was not the case in 2020. Plenty of uncertainty still exists for 2021 but here are some reflections and predictions from an executive recruitment and remuneration perspective.
SA will undoubtedly continue to be a target destination for executives and non-executive directors. The unparalleled work/life benefits of this great state will act as a magnet for talent. As such, we anticipate that overqualified being the new qualified will still be a factor and therefore overall remuneration movements should stay relatively conservative.
Adelaide was certainly less damaged by COVID 19 than so many cities in the world and thus, there must be some bright horizons for an economic recovery. Sustained low interest rates must surely help too. Defence continues to ramp up and this will start to create further employment opportunities. This will also place a strain on the very technical engineering and related roles and relative labour shortages may persist here.
The high demand for clinical professionals in all aspects of human services (aged care, disability, health) seems also likely to cause shortages in those disciplines. Cybersecurity experts also look set to stay in high demand. On the flipside, continued economic softness is likely to create relative surpluses of executives in the corporate services suite including finance, HR, marketing, ICT, administration and positions in those specialities should therefore draw high volume of suitable candidates and be keenly contested.
Executive and Board Members who can credibly and genuinely help organisations navigate fundamental transformation in industries such as aged care and disability (post the Royal Commission era) will be hot property in our view.
Naturally, the success of vaccine rollouts, fall out from impacts of the trade tensions on sectors such as wine and some concerns regarding the end of JobKeeper Round Two also inject a further layer of uncertainty.
Buying local tendencies for goods and services (particularly in light of increasing global trade tensions) also appears to create an opportunity for South Australian businesses with strong intrastate networks and relationships.
Tourism inside the state also has a unique chance to thrive. Agriculture also seems poised to power on and be the economic stalwart it has always been.
Sadly, bricks and mortar retail may still continue to struggle a little with the COVID accelerated evolution of online buying, but nonetheless, niche businesses that sell something people buy instead of an overseas holiday may well remain strong for some time ahead. Public infrastructure stimulus spending should further bolster activity and create executive opportunities.
Luckily, our high ratio of government roles in the SA labour market will hopefully provide some security and certainty and the benefits of this security should certainly be factored into any remuneration discussions. The private sector definitely took the lion’s share of the impact in regard to remuneration in 2020.
To finish on a bright note. Adelaide may well be in the top ten cities in the world to live and work. There is a unique chance for us to experience a talent led recovery. We are blessed with an affordable lifestyle, world-class schools and associated human services providers and an ever-improving executive cohort with the agility, ingenuity, and capability to lead local organisations through these challenging times.
We therefore anticipate some significant activity in terms of leadership opportunity and hold a default positive view of the year ahead.
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