Munster employers are the least likely to take on new staff with an outlook of -10% for the second quarter, according to a recruitment company survey.
The survey, carried out by recruitment solutions company Manpower, found that employers in three-out-of-five regions surveyed expect negative head-count growth in the next quarter.
More than 10% of employers expect to decrease their workforce in the
second quarter, with only 7% intending to hire.
Despite hiring intentions remaining weak, the percentage of employers expecting to add to their workforce is the highest since Q4 2008.
The survey, carried out in five regions and 11 industry sectors, found that overall hiring activity will remain sluggish in the second quarter, with a net employment outlook of -3%.
The -10% outlook for Munster represents a decline of 11 and 7 percentage points quarter-over- quarter and year-over-year, respectively.
The net employment outlook for the Ulster region stands at -5% which, according to the survey, is a marginal improvement compared to the first quarter of 2012.
The most positive outlook is reported by Leinster employers (+1%), while employers in the Connaught region report muted hiring plans with an outlook of 0%.
The survey reported that strongest outlooks are reported by employers in the agriculture, forestry and fishing (+10%), public and social (+4%) and pharmaceutical (+3%) sectors.
In contrast, the weakest hiring intentions are anticipated by restaurants and hotels (-17%), transport, storage and communication (-17%) and the mining and quarrying (-13%) sector employers.
Manpower Ireland managing director Krissie Davies said the research results reflect the uncertain business environment and challenges faced by employers.
“Rapid adjustments are required to operate at present; businesses have to manage demand fluctuations, increasing operating costs and competitive pressure, which require maintaining tight control over costs and increasing productivity,” Ms Davies said.
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