Jobs on the rise?

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

With a ris­ing trend in job place­ment ad­ver­tise­ments, one would think that Cyprus has over­come its eco­nomic cri­sis and that un­em­ploy­ment lev­els were fall­ing.

How­ever, that is far from re­al­ity with the na­tional job­less rate stub­bornly above the 15% thresh­old, but with some hope for op­ti­mism.

The lat­est Labour Force Survey (LFS) showed that in monthly sea­son­ally ad­justed fig­ures, un­em­ploy­ment de­creased marginally from 15.9% in May 2013 to 15.3% in May 2014.

“We are still not out of the cri­sis,” said Michalis An­to­niou, Deputy Di­rec­tor Gen­eral of the Em­ploy­ers and In­dus­tri­al­ists Fed­er­a­tion, OEV.

“What we can say for sure is that there is a clear drop in the rate of rise in un­em­ploy­ment. In other words, things seem to have sta­bilised. There are many other in­di­ca­tors that will de­ter­mine a drop in the job­less rate and a rise in em­ploy­ment lev­els,” he said.

Vacancy ads in re­cent weeks have in­cluded mainly ju­nior and mid-level ac­coun­tants, lawyers, of­fice ad­min­is­tra­tion, as well as the usual dose of fran­chise op­er­a­tors ex­pand­ing and seek­ing to ver­ti­cally in­te­grate their stores, ei­ther re­tail out­lets for cloth­ing or food chains.

But what caught our eye was the ad­vi­sory firm MAP S.Platis that has been ad­ver­tis­ing for 14 jobs, a num­ber un­heard of for any em­ployer, even in the good old days of high em­ploy­ment lev­els.

This is an in­di­ca­tion that the firm that turned Cyprus into a hub for forex firms con­tin­ues to grow de­spite the eco­nomic cri­sis.

“We have ob­tained li­censes for 85 Cyprus In­vest­ment Firms since 2006, in­clud­ing the in­dus­try’s big­ger names whilst we ex­pect some more li­censes be­fore year-end – also a cou­ple of big names,” said Dr. Ste­lios Platis, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor of the firm.

“Our fi­nan­cial ser­vices ad­vi­sory team is to­day one of Europe’s largest team of ex­perts on Euro­pean fi­nan­cial ser­vices leg­is­la­tion and es­pe­cially on forex,” he added.

The MAP S.Platis Group cur­rently em­ploys more than 65 peo­ple in Li­mas­sol and Nicosia, of whom nine have come aboard within the past 12 months.

“We are cur­rently look­ing for peo­ple with ex­pe­ri­ence in forex and/or fi­nan­cial ser­vices with em­pha­sis on com­pli­ance, as well as first­class grad­u­ates to en­ter our 3-year man­age­ment train­ing pro­gramme. We are also look­ing for ex­pe­ri­enced as well as ju­nior lawyers and ac­coun­tants,” said Ste­lios Platis who has posted the va­can­cies at

. In a sim­i­lar tone and sug­gest­ing a ris­ing trend in business ser­vices and providers, FBS Kot­somi­tis is look­ing to hire six peo­ple in the ac­counts and ad­min­is­tra­tion ar­eas, mainly at its Nicosia premises, but also to ad­min­is­ter the company’s new op­er­a­tion of ser­viced and vir­tual of­fices at .

www.map­splatis.com/ca­reers/

www.of­fices­pace.com.cy

TEMP LI­CENSE, OUT­LOOK BET­TER

Ac­cord­ing to GRS, a leader in the re­cruit­ment sec­tor, one in­ter­est­ing de­vel­op­ment is the reg­u­la­tion of the tem­po­rary worker re­cruit­ment mar­ket by the Min­istry of Labour.

“GRS is the only re­cruit­ment con­sul­tancy in Cyprus that is li­censed for pro­vid­ing this ser­vice and gain­ing the li­cense was an im­por­tant strate­gic step in en­sur­ing that GRS can con­tinue to pro­vide tem­po­rary work­ers to our clients in Cyprus. We see this as a growth area in the com­ing years as more and more com­pa­nies look at how a flex­i­ble work­force can ben­e­fit their or­gan­i­sa­tion. We note the rea­sons for hir­ing a tem­po­rary worker range from cov­er­ing peak times, projects, ma­ter­nity leave and the abil­ity to have a flex­i­ble worker that is not re­ported on the company’s head­count,” ex­plained Donna Stephen­son, co-founder GRS Group

. Look­ing ahead, she said that the out­look for per­ma­nent hir­ing has been much bet­ter than last year.

“If we com­pare our per­ma­nent hir­ing statis­tics of 2014 to 2013, we are 50% up on rev­enue year-to-date in com­par­i­son to the an­nual rev­enue of 2013, with the fi­nal quar­ter of 2014 to fur­ther in­crease on this by 50%,” Stephen­son added.

“For 2014, we are al­ready up 50% on 2013 and 1% up on 2012. We are op­ti­mistic and can re­port that dur­ing Q3 we in­creased our re­cruit­ing team at GRS with the ad­di­tion of four new hires. Our statis­tics show re­cruit­ing ac­tiv­ity at all lev­els from grad­u­ate hir­ing to ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor across mainly pro­fes­sional/business ser­vice sec­tors and a con­tin­ued hir­ing year-on-year in the forex, bi­nary trad­ing and CIF sec­tor at all lev­els,” she added.

As re­gards the en­ergy sec­tor, GRS co­founder Steve Slo­combe said that “over the last 12 months we have seen an in­crease in the num­ber of va­can­cies in the oil & gas sec­tor with a range of po­si­tions com­ing up from health & safety, lo­gis­tics, drilling, ad­min­is­tra­tion and ac­count­ing. In terms of vol­umes, it has been steady as many se­nior

www.grsre­cruit­ment.com

tech­ni­cal po­si­tions tend to be filled by the oil & gas com­pa­nies’ own peo­ple who have been brought in from out­side of Cyprus.”

“As drilling in­creases and pro­duc­tion and ex­trac­tion oc­cur, th­ese vol­umes will grow sub­stan­tially and this will be even more so if the go ahead is given to pro­ceed with the LNG plant,” Slo­combe added.

As re­gards the dis­par­ity be­tween ex­pe­ri­enced non-qual­i­fied staff and younger grad­u­ates with no ex­pe­ri­ence, Slo­combe ad­mit­ted that there are less se­nior po­si­tions avail­able in the mar­ket place as com­pa­nies have ex­panded less and there is less of a de­mand for se­nior per­son­nel.

“With less op­por­tu­ni­ties avail­able and the cur­rent eco­nomic cli­mate more se­nior can­di­dates are not as ea­ger to move as they would have prior to 2013 which can cre­ate a jobs ‘log­jam’ at mid­dle man­age­ment both ex­ter­nally within com­pa­nies and ex­ter­nally in the mar­ket­place,” he ex­plained.

“Sta­tis­ti­cally, there are less man­age­rial/se­nior po­si­tions avail­able than more ju­nior cler­i­cal/ad­min­is­tra­tive po­si­tions. Hav­ing said that, we have placed quite a few se­nior ex­ec­u­tives in Cyprus on over six fig­ure salaries over the last two quarters which would in­di­cate new com­pa­nies are still ex­pand­ing into Cyprus al­beit at less than they were in 2011/12,” Slo­combe con­cluded.

FOREX HIR­ING ALL YEAR ROUND

Although Septem­ber is a no­to­ri­ously good month for re­cruit­ment in Cyprus, over the last few years we have seen a shift in this trend with the sum­mer months bring­ing in a lot more va­can­cies than in other years gone by,” said Tony Pa­padopou­los of the re­cruit­ment spe­cial­ist company StaffMat­ters

www.sm­staffmat­ters.com

. “This trend can be shown in the num­ber of job va­can­cies we have re­ceived from our clients from June to Septem­ber, almost dou­ble com­pared to Jan­uary to May,” he added.

“One rea­son could be that many of the in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies based in Cyprus, such as the fi­nan­cial trad­ing com­pa­nies (forex and bi­nary op­tions) do not close dur­ing sum­mer and th­ese com­pa­nies seem to do more hir­ing dur­ing this time of the year com­pared to the ear­lier part of 2014.”

Pa­padopou­los added that there has been a marked in­crease over the last 2-3 months in the num­ber of va­can­cies from other sec­tors such as cor­po­rate & business ser­vice, ac­count­ing, le­gal, shipping, IT, other ecom­merce com­pa­nies “which is a very good sign for the job mar­ket in gen­eral.”

“For the most part, Forex re­lated job va­can­cies have dom­i­nated the Cyprus em­ploy­ment mar­ket for the last few years. The prob­lem is that not all job seek­ers are in­ter­ested to follow a ca­reer within forex and some forex com­pa­nies have pre­ferred to hire can­di­dates who bring some ex­pe­ri­ence.

This has meant that a large part of the un­em­ployed com­mu­nity are still strug­gling to find work.”

Pa­padopou­los added that the oil & gas in­dus­try seems to be gain­ing some mo­men­tum, how­ever more so on the side of ser­vice providers to the in­dus­try who seem to be hir­ing in or­der to have cer­tain key po­si­tions cov­ered.

“As for the ac­tual oil & gas com­pa­nies, we have not seen much move­ment from the big­ger play­ers in terms of mass or sub­stan­tial hir­ing as yet, how­ever this may only start hap­pen­ing to­ward the mid­dle/end of 2015.”

Of­fer­ing some hope to non-qual­i­fied but highly skilled and ex­pe­ri­enced peo­ple in their 30s and 40s, Pa­padopou­los said that through the eco­nomic cri­sis and all the other dif­fi­cul­ties that Cyprus has had to over­come in the last two years, many com­pa­nies have been more will­ing to hir­ing older can­di­dates as op­posed to young­sters, “as the com­pa­nies feel that the older can­di­date will pos­si­bly bring more sta­bil­ity, ma­tu­rity and longevity to the role and company and in many cases less train­ing will be re­quired with a far less risk of hav­ing a quick turnover in this po­si­tion.”

“But when it comes to sales ori­en­tated po­si­tions, pref­er­ence is almost al­ways given to younger can­di­dates as they are per­ceived to be eas­ier to train and more en­er­getic and mo­ti­vated to ful­fil a role within sales that will re­quire a lot of en­ergy, ded­i­ca­tion and mo­ti­va­tion,” Pa­padopou­los con­cluded.

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