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Career Counselor
Good News for Job Seekers: You've Got Leverage

January 2007 Navigating the job market can be challenging, especially for those just beginning their careers. But a recent survey found some encouraging news for job seekers, who may have more leverage than they might think.

Four out of five hiring managers polled in the 2006 Employment Dynamics and Growth Expectations (EDGE) Report from Robert Half International and said they believe it is now equally or more challenging to recruit new candidates than it was a year ago. While this may not be a desirable situation for employers, there's a positive message for job seekers.

Ironically, employees polled in the same survey said they felt the current job market is just as challenging as last year's. Only 15 percent think it is easier to find a job today than it was 12 months ago.

Following are some additional facts uncovered by the EDGE Report that can help boost your confidence in your job search.

  • Salaries stable, some increasing. Of the 1,000 hiring managers polled, 38 percent expect compensation offers to rise in the next year. Another 54 percent expect no change, and only 8 percent expect offers to decrease.

  • Retention efforts up. The EDGE Report hints that job security may be improving, too. Given the challenge of attracting new talent, some hiring managers are taking steps to retain their top performers. The percentage of respondents who have instituted programs aimed at preventing turnover rose from 23 percent last year to 30 percent this year. The three most frequently implemented benefits, according to hiring managers, are more salary increases, bonuses and flexible work schedules.

  • Non-monetary benefits playing a bigger role. While it's not surprising that nearly half (45 percent) of workers polled view health insurance as the most important employer-provided benefit, 24 percent cited flexible work hours as most significant. More and more organizations understand that non-monetary perks could make a salary and benefits package significantly more attractive.

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ACCOUNTEMPS is a specialized temporary staffing service for accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals. Accountemps provides support throughout an accounting department. Headquartered in Menlo Park, Calif., Accountemps and has more than 270 offices in North America, Europe and Australia. Accountemps' Career Counselor column, a SmartPros staple for over four years, is refreshed twice a month.

2007 SmartPros Ltd. All rights reserved.

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