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Recruitment Trends

Recruitment Trends 2023: What Global Industry Leaders Are Saying

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Ever thought a crystal ball might help you in recruitment? The future is no sure thing, but by studying the trends around us, we can get on more solid ground.

At Vincere, we wanted to survey what’s ahead for recruiters in 2023. We reached out to the winners of the Vinnys Awards to learn about challenges and opportunities in their local markets.

The MDs, Co-Founders, Directors, and Consultants we spoke to all had similar feelings about recruitment trends in 2023.

In short: client engagement and biz dev are in, while candidate shortages and “the old ways” are out.
The same global events came up in several conversations. Most people in the industry are facing tough challenges like supply chain issues and the threat of a recession.

But even with clouds on the horizon, there's room for optimism.

Tech expansion and refined recruitment methods have changed things up in the UK and in EMEA.

Australian recruiters are finding shifting, but increasing, opportunities. In the APAC region, “new unicorns” and growth in their talent markets are going strong. And local sectors are booming in the Americas.

We’ve collected these industry leaders’ hot takes and local knowledge. Read on for a region-by-region breakdown of predictions for the recruitment industry in 2023.


Across the UK and in EMEA’s markets, change is already here.

More companies are turning to recruitment agencies for support. Meanwhile, recruiters are leveraging remote and hybrid work set-ups to base their operations anywhere.

While some businesses continue to struggle, carefully selecting the right tech and the right companies to work with is key. 

LynneWaters Personnel | South Africa

Recruitment is changing. It's no longer about that old way of doing things.

I mean, Vincere came out with Vinneo. I see a lot of video usage happening out there. A lot of KPIs now involve social media engagement. And we see more people being able to recruit from Seychelles, the Bahamas, sitting anywhere - while their home company is based in South Africa, for example.

There’s more ability to work from anywhere and no longer just “bums on seats.” Technology is taking over the old way of recruitment.

Philani Ndwandwe, Director, Executive Recruiter


Nordic Jobs Worldwide | Spain

I think the recruitment industry will continue to grow and more companies will start to use the service as a support for their own HR function. That´s a win-win!

For new recruiters, I’d say: Manifest your future, set up your own goals and expectations for yourself. Be humble and stay positive in everything you do. Identify your role in your company and/or team and don’t be afraid to take chances.

Ann-Kathrine Simonsen, Regional Operations Manager, South Europe


Connecting Experts | UK

I work in the market of electric vehicles. Of course everyone, everywhere around the world is needing to make electric vehicles. So for me, my market’s still growing very aggressively.

There are obviously other suppliers out there that are struggling. It’s only maybe because competitors are outpowering them due to their manpower and how quickly they’re growing.

You’ve just got to make sure that you’re working with the right type of company.

Luca Bergonzi, Principal Sales Consultant



In Australia, there are notes of cautious optimism.

Candidate shortages are in the past and demand is less intense. This can be tough for recruiters who are inexperienced in business development.

In short: the focus is on winning new clients.

Cox Purtell | Australia

As a recruiter, we’re always naturally optimistic people. Sometimes we can be blind optimists.
Some people will have over-hired, maybe paying salaries that are just not sustainable.

Some people, through this quite good market, have invested in growth. There’s nothing wrong with that. But there's a balance to be found to save for a rainy day.

I'm quietly confident it'll be strong for 6 to 12 months, but there are just so many variables at play that are out of our control.

My prediction is that it should be a good year, but I won't be totally surprised if there's some massive change.

James Purtell, Managing Director


Charterhouse Partnership | Australia

I think 2023 will see the recruitment market return to more like the pre-pandemic levels.

I don’t see the market crashing, but I think the demand for talent has been so ferocious as organizations want to hire to take advantage of a surging economy. With the heat now being taken out we’ll see that demand resembles more like 2018-2019 levels.

Charlie Collin, Recruitment Manager


Change Recruitment | Australia

Recruitment is going to get tougher. And I think we're already seeing that.
As that “candidate shortage” dynamic changes, the recruitment industry will become much more BD-heavy again.

I see a drop in Perm and an increase in Contract. Typically, as economies change, Perm recruitment seems to be the first to go. Companies try and bring that cost saving back in-house, and then Contract’s done on a project basis for large organizations.

Mike Hollowbread, Co-Founder


After COVID, a lot of people got into recruitment, and have only ever seen a market on an upturn.

They've seen this meteoric growth of either their Contract book or their Perm billings without ever really having to do any business development.

There are going to be a fair few people leaving the industry when they realize it's not all easy, breezy. And with that, there'll be a shift in agency dynamics.

Michael Carter, Co-Founder 


Aston Advantage | Australia

Specifically for Australia, it's obviously been very candidate-short. We didn't have access to a lot of people who are looking for work and who weren't already employed. It’s meant that we've had to change our recruitment methodology.

But what I'm seeing now is people going, “Oh, okay, we're outside of the pandemic, I'm open to looking at more jobs.” Which in turn creates more opportunities for our clients.

I think it's going to benefit the industry very positively, and a lot more people are going to be employed in the jobs that they really want. So, I think it's going to be a good year.

Megan Jones, Team Leader


Sorciety | Australia

I think regardless of what happens in the world from an economic standpoint, recruitment agencies will shift their focus.

For a while now the market has been job-rich and recruiters have not had to do too much in the way of client or business development. As agencies look to increase their footprint in new markets, recruiters will need to adapt and learn this.

We see the ability to win new business as being the most in-demand trait for recruiters moving forward.

Lee Jones, Co-Founder / Director



Across the Asia-Pacific region, things are looking up.

There’s some rumbling around tech hiring and potential market slowdowns.

But strong foundations plus good client relationships will help recruitment businesses weather any storm.

Crescendo Global | India

In the last two years there's been a lot of hiring in the tech industry. There has to be a phase when consolidation starts to happen. Companies are going to question the value that gets created by every individual.

At the same time, there are new unicorns that are getting created. More and more companies are getting billion-dollar valuations. So this also opens up more opportunities for new people.

Medical science is evolving, and post-COVID people have become more sensitive to their overall health. I think this creates a lot of opportunities in life sciences, healthcare, and pharmaceutical businesses, as well.

Raghav Choudhary, Managing Director


Cornerstone Japan | Japan

There's a little bit of doom and gloom around 2023. And lots of global stuff going on can affect business, obviously. But for me, I think good businesses will always survive.

There may be some dips here and there in the market, but I think the market will remain okay. And I think the businesses that have good people and strong foundations are going to continue to succeed.

We're bullish about 2023.

Matt Nicholls, Co-Founder / Managing Director


CGP Thailand | Thailand

The elephant in the room now is the recession, but I'm still very optimistic.

In my view, recruitment in 2023 is about client engagement. People who have good relationships with clients will survive next year and can get through the bad times of a recession.

There are many, many new kids on the block in our talent market. It's a sign that our industry is booming.

Thailand is developing into a more mature market, more competitive. It's good for companies as well because they have more choices now.

So I'm looking forward to 2023, 2024 and 2025, to see how our sector will develop.

Wipawat Panutyothin, Director – Permanent Recruitment, Thailand


Jackson Grant | Thailand

Transactional recruitment will start to ebb away.

WFH as a must will be challenged as employers start to realize more junior staff aren’t developing as much as hoped due to limited interactions with people.

More and more technology will be introduced into streamlining recruitment.

Alexander Grant, Director of Recruitment Operations


The Americas

Over in the Americas, opportunities are plenty despite some shake-ups from global events.

The Latin American market is particularly strong in several sectors, from IT to agribusiness and more.

Even so, caution from businesses and investors means that recruitment agencies still need to deliver great ROI.

JDV Partners | Colombia

The pandemic, the Russia/Ukraine war, logistics, our supply chain - plus the increase of living costs an employees' stability - have been the biggest challenges that we've encountered this and the past year.

Even though we're seeing global economic growth decreasing from 7% to an estimated 2.7%, there’s still a positive response in the Latin American market.

Most of our new roles have been in operations, IT, corporate social responsibility, health, safety, environment, HR, and finance.

I think we’ll see lots of new vacancies and more opportunities.

Juan David Viñas, Managing Director


UNI.CO | Brazil

We’re starting the year with a new government here in Brazil, while facing several global and local macroeconomic and geopolitical challenges.

We think that companies will be very careful about investing in Executive Search services. Because of this, great ROI aligned with an amazing client experience will become even more important.

Some sectors that are very resilient around here are agribusiness, utilities like energy and sanitation, banks and other financial market players, and telecommunications.

Being a local and knowing Latin American market, I think that there will be lots of hidden opportunities at small and mid-sized companies. We Latinos are very resilient and entrepreneurial people.

During this time, we must make a positive impact with every interaction and generate the best value for every client.

Roberto Borsic, Partner


Final Thoughts

For 2023, several global trends are starting to shape the global recruitment landscape.

Ongoing challenges from geopolitical conflicts are making recruiters feel unsteady. And one topic on everyone’s mind is whether a recession will hit in ‘23.

There are real reasons to worry, especially as VC markets dry up and cause turbulence in the tech world – which is already creating side effects in other sectors.

Agencies’ overspending or weakness in their business development strategy will hurt regardless of any economic slowdown.

Demand is inching back to pre-pandemic levels. At the same time, some local conditions will make it easier to hire in certain sectors. Clients will be choosier and look for the best possible return on their investment.

More candidate movement can lead to new opportunities if recruiters have strategies in place.

If we can say one thing confidently in 2023, it’s that client relationships and business development are the highest priorities. With good foundations, good relationships, and great ROI, recruitment businesses can forge their way ahead in this uncertain environment.