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Total Workforce Index: a global analyses of changing international markets

Although societies around the globe are still experiencing the aftermaths of COVID-19, organisations are determined to rebound and reimagine their future. Manpower Group’s Total Workforce Index can help companies leverage their decisions towards materialising their goals in the face of change.

Dionysis Skandalos on January 14, 2021 Average reading time: 3 min
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Total Workforce Index: a global analyses of changing international markets

After the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, employers in every nation have been putting a great effort into developing a new landscape in the place of work. Some of the most pressing considerations organisations are facing today are the necessity to understand not only skill-based requirements, but also location based needs, to evaluate safety and protection measures for protecting sustainability, to identify what future skills and technology are needed and also how best to operate within changing regulatory landscapes.

TWI helps organisations navigate a changing world with real-time actionable data and insights.

Manpower Group Talent Solutions’ Total Workforce Index (TWI) analyses over 200 factors across 76 global workforce markets for a comprehensive and comparative view of four key factors: Workforce Availability, Cost Efficiency, Regulation and Workforce Productivity. TWI helps organisations navigate a changing world with real-time actionable data and insights, in order to keep pace with the next normal and to ensure that their workforce strategy aligns with their business strategy.

Top 5 insights

The following key insights are the epitome of today’s new normal and the way that organisations must re-evaluate their workforce strategies, as a result of the changing skills requirements and the growing trend of remote working.

  • The evaluation of market readiness for transition to remote working involves much more than a mere cost analysis
  • The definition of job requirements is evolving as a response to current market conditions
  • Employers must proactively determine the optimal mix of permanent and contingent labor types in their organisation, based on their business priorities.
  • The emergence of new roles and skills requirements not only has intensified wage pressures, but also has perplexed the need to find or build the right talent for these new positions.
  • Despite the improvement in unemployment figures in the second half of 2020, there is still a large number of disengaged employees that present the perfect opportunity for employers to hire by rethinking and redefining their job requirements

How to leverage the Total Workforce Index for workforce planning

Total Workforce Index ranking allows the organisations to address critical short and long term workforce planning questions through the provision of important perspectives and insights. Examples of such questions include the following:

  • Where are the best markets with a workforce that has the required skills?
  • Which is the right remote and on-site strategy?
  • Which factors should organisations take into account when choosing new location?
  • How do shifting regulations and changing wages impact a specific location?

A detailed custom TWI analysis, conducted by ManpowerGroup Talent Solutions, reached the conclusion that the following factors have the potential to influence organisations’ short and long term workforce planning decisions:

  •  Location Strategy
  •  Remote Work Allocation
  •  Capacity Planning – Cost Savings
  •  Market Investments
  •  Organisational Restructuring
  •  Workforce Mix
  •  Sourcing Strategy

2020 Top 10 Highest Ranking Markets

The Total Workforce Index™ ranks each market on more than 200 unique factors. Each of these statistical factors is carefully weighted and grouped under one of the four categories: Availability, Cost Efficiency, Regulation and Productivity.

Countries with above average performance have successfully managed to cope with trends, such as remote workforce readiness, automation, closing skills gaps, shifting regulations and the rapid pace of technology.

Countries with above average performance have successfully managed to cope with trends, such as remote workforce readiness, automation, closing skills gaps, shifting regulations and the rapid pace of technology. They have exhibited market stability, have upskilled existing workforces and are adequately skilling emerging workforces to meet changing job requirements. These factors benefit organisations aiming to invest in workforce engagement (i.e., acquisition and retention of talent).

Top markets in the last 5 Years

Each year, weightings are adjusted and new factors are added to the Total Workforce Index™ based on changing global needs and trends. Even with these changes in place, several markets have consistently appeared in the top ten year-over-year. This fact demonstrates stability in these more mature workforce markets as well as skills availability, language proficiency and moderately flexible regulatory environments. Organisations that whiteness these trends and perform a data-driven analysis, customised to their circumstances and markets, have a tremendous chance to unlock potential and ensure their workforce and business strategies are aligned.

Key updates to the 2020 Index

As a result of the increased reliance and focus on remote workforce deployment, the 2020 Total Workforce Index™ now incorporates global remote work readiness indicators across each of the 76 markets. These represent over 20 unique market factors that are responsible for the availability of remote-capable skills.

Furthermore, additional weighting has been placed to the quality and depth of skills within talent Availability, as well as the impact of certain legislative factors (e.g., border restrictions) that heavily impact workforce performance and hiring processes.

Top 5: Availability

Workforce Availability assesses the relative comparison of the current skilled workforce in each market and the likely sustainability of that workforce based on demographic trends, such as age and influx of immigrants. Markets with a high score in the Availability category have the largest supply of skilled workers with a high level of English proficiency or other high-demand languages, such as Spanish and French and high remote workforce readiness. These markets are not necessarily the largest or most mature ones.

The rankings for Availability this year were mainly the result of two factors: 1) Increased prioritisation of remote workforce readiness and diverse language proficiency (multi-language) and 2) reduced prioritisation of educational requirements for jobs, especially among IT candidates, as employers are mostly concerned with what is actually needed versus what has been traditionally the requirement (e.g., a particular education degree).

The United States tops the list and is included in the top five in Availability for the first time since 2017, when it ranked 5th.

The top five markets concerning skills availability are the following: United States, Singapore, Switzerland, United Arab Emirates and Luxembourg. The United States tops the list and is included in the top five in Availability for the first time since 2017, when it ranked 5th. Singapore withdraws to the second position, at the same time that the remaining markets from the 2019 Availability rankings – Ireland, Norway, the United Kingdom and New Zealand – disappear from the top five altogether.

Top 5: Cost Efficiency

Cost Efficiency assesses the relative comparison of wage, benefits, tax and operations metrics to demonstrate opportunities for potential cost efficiency. Traditionally, the lowest-cost markets are the least mature ones and generally have a less restrictive legislative environment and higher workforce availability.

Another striking fact is Philippines’ completion of its steady climb over the past three years to secure the top spot.

The rankings for Cost Efficiency this year were, to a great extent, the result of shifting country dynamics—namely wages, cost of labor and regulations. The top five markets for Cost Efficiency are the Philippines, Croatia, Morocco, Vietnam and Thailand. This is Croatia’s first appearance in the top five markets for Cost Efficiency. Another striking fact is Philippines’ completion of its steady climb over the past three years to secure the top spot. At the same time Morocco holds the third position, Vietnam rises to the fourth spot and Thailand withdraws from 1st to 5th.

Top 5: Regulation

Regulation assesses the relative comparison of how restrictive the terms and practices of workforce engagement are, based on a standard set of regulations. Favourable regulatory environments are constructed when organisations can choose from many types of workforce engagements and can flexibly determine contract lengths and notice periods.

This year’s rankings for Regulation are influenced by the border restrictions affecting access to labor at the time of the analysis, as well as stricter requirements concerning labor allocations/quota (i.e., allocations of national versus foreign labor and ratios of permanent versus contingent labor categories). Moreover, changes in markets’ definition of agencies, consultants, freelancers and other contingent types, add additional legislative and administrative processes. The top five markets for Regulation include Ireland, Finland, New Zealand, Denmark and Norway.

Top 5: Productivity

The Productivity category assesses the relative productivity potential of a workforce based on the number of hours an employer can compensate a worker at base pay. Productivity is affected by all three other categories (Availability, Cost Efficiency and Regulation).

This year’s rankings for Productivity are affected by changes in the average length of a workday and workweek and the average number of working days in a year. The top five markets regarding Productivity impact are Singapore, the United States, Israel, Macau and Hong Kong.

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