Employers in Bulgaria declared they will maintain moderate hiring pace in Q3, according to the latest Employment Outlook Survey of ManpowerGroup. The Net Employment Outlook for the quarter was 8%, up by 1pp from Q2 and down by 1pp y/y. The survey covered 620 employers in Bulgaria, 85% of whom did not plan new hiring or dismissals throughout the quarter, 11% projected to increase their employees and 2% planned cutbacks. Only 2% were unsure about their staffing levels in Q2. Cautious hiring was related to the expanding gap between employers’ needs and requirements and the lack of sufficiently qualified workforce, Aleksandar Hangimana, Managing Director of ManpowerGroup Balkans commented.
In terms of industrial sectors, the strongest hiring plans were reported in the finance, insurance, real estate and business services, where the Net Employment Outlook rose by 4pps q/q and y/y to +16%. Employers from the electricity, gas and water sector, construction, as well as in the transport and communications sectors also planned to increase their employees. On the other hand, companies in the mining and quarrying sector will make cutbacks in their payrolls. Despite the upcoming summer season, the outlook index in the tourism sector was flat at 0%, which we think was due to lower bookings and weaker expectations of the sector regarding tourism interest towards in Bulgaria in 2019.
The strongest hiring intentions were reported by large companies with more than 250 employers. On the other hand, the outlook index for micro enterprises with less than 10 employees was much lower.
In regional terms, the highest Net Employment Outlook of 12% was registered for the region of seaside city Varna. The index for the capital Sofia was moderate at +7% but was still higher than for the large cities of Plovdiv, Burgas and Rousse.