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Bank of England Unveils Four-Pronged Stimulus Package in Bid to Avoid Brexit Recession
The Bank of England unveiled a four-pronged stimulus package designed to boost the economy and prevent a recession following the vote to leave the European Union. In what economists described as a “forceful response” to an expected UK slowdown, policymakers voted unanimously to cut rates to 0.25 percent, from a previous record low of 0.5 percent. In addition to the first interest rate cut in seven years, the £170 billion package would also add £60 billion to the Bank of England’s quantitative easing (QE) program, taking asset purchases up to £435 billion over the coming six months. The Bank also announced plans to buy up to £10 billion of high quality corporate debt to drive down funding costs, and launch a “Term Funding Scheme” worth up to £100 billion, allowing commercial banks to borrow a proportion of their outstanding lending for four years at around 0.25 percent. The program would be funded by new money created by the Bank. The National Institute of Economic and Social Research policies calculated that the Bank’s policy measures could stimulate the economy by as much as 0.5 percent over the next two years. Read the full article for additional analysis and policymaker sentiment.
Rwanda Receives US$ 50 million for Third Phase of Skills
The Government of Rwanda and African Development Bank (AfDB) recently signed a US$ 50 million loan agreement to finance the third phase of a Skills, Employability and Entrepreneurship program (SEEP III). SEEP III is a continuation of two earlier phases that focused on reforms, boosting technical, vocational, educational and training (TVET) skills, and enhancing business advisory services and the creation of new start-ups. The program is a joint development of the AfDB and the Government of Rwanda, working in close consultation with the private sector and other key global development partners and countries. SEEP III aims to continue to develop mid-level technical skills to promote production, particularly within the manufacturing and agro-processing sectors. The program is expected to spur job creation and accelerate the availability of skilled labor, and bring more of the country’s youth into the workforce. The Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Claver Gatete, said the loan “will contribute to Government financing requirements that Rwanda faces to address a critical skills gap, education relevance and innovative entrepreneurship.” See the complete article.
Employers Overlook Valuable Talent Pools
A recent study by Robert Walters has revealed that employers in the UAE are overlooking valuable pools of talent, such as professionals returning to the workforce after a career break and employees changing careers, in spite of an ongoing skills shortage. The survey revealed that while 34 percent of professionals have taken a career break and later returned to the workforce, just 13 percent of employers have a strategy in place to attract them. The findings also show that 89 percent of professionals would consider changing careers for the right opportunity, but 32 percent of employers have no plan in place to attract them. Forty percent of employers are currently unlikely to hire those who do not meet their exact recruitment criteria. "Professionals from other disciplines, international workers and those returning to the workforce following a career break are all potential sources of skilled candidates for employers who are prepared to be flexible in their hiring criteria and adapt their recruitment strategy to reach these people," notes Jason Grundy, country head at Robert Walters Middle East. "By taking on candidates with transferable skills and the aptitude and enthusiasm to learn, employers can bring unique experiences and perspectives into their businesses while simultaneously filling business critical roles,” he added. Read on for more survey findings and analysis from the Walters study, and a Bloovo.com survey of what job seekers regard as their top criteria.
Housing: Other Emirates Act As Satellite Cities to Dubai
A report by Reidin.com, a real estate information company focusing on emerging markets, has revealed that the limited stock of affordable housing options in Dubai has caused neighboring emirates to act like satellite cities. Around 1.1 million people who work in Dubai reside in another emirate (30 percent of the active population), as they try to take advantage of cheaper rates, according to the report. Rates in other emirates such as Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah and Ajman are 30-40 percent cheaper than the affordable options of Dubai, and can offer greater accessibility to larger-sized units. Dubai workers who reside outside of it increased by 185 percent (13 percent to 37 percent) from 2005 to 2009, coinciding with the tripling of rental rates and limited affordable housing options. However, after the global financial crisis, rental rates plunged and much of the population moved back to Dubai. From 2009 to 2015, the percentage of workers living outside Dubai decreased by 16 percent, despite an increase in rental rates in 2012. A breakdown of Dubai’s freehold supply reveals that only 36 percent is below the Dh70,000 annual rental mark. Within that segment, the majority is skewed towards studios and one-bedrooms. “Developers will have to shift course, by offering larger dwellings at reasonable rates in order to attract families. It has been this supply pipeline that has led to the growth of satellite cities around Dubai. This has been a trend that has been witnessed in major metropolitan cities throughout the world," the report said. Access the full article for more information and details.
APACChina Launches First Mobile Telecoms Satellite from Beijing
Just after midnight local time in Beijing on Sunday, 7 August, China launched the Tiantong-01 satellite, its first mobile telecommunications satellite, to establish a mobile network serving China, the Middle East, Africa and other areas, the state run Xinhua news agency reported. The ground service is operated by China Telecom, which is owned by the Chinese state. See additional details about this and other planned space program initiatives.What Does HR Make of the EP Salary Raise?
Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has announced that foreign professionals will need to be compensated at least S$3,600 from next January if organizations want to recruit them on Employment Passes (EPs). The qualifying salary for EP professionals was raised from the current S$3,300. This could drive increases in sourcing local talent for some posts, but for organizations that hire foreign professionals with starting salaries steeper than the proposed monthly criteria, the increase is unlikely to be an issue. HRM Asia garnered reactions on the ground from senior HR professionals. Rakesh Rana, HR leader at Murex, noted that “permanent recruitment will not be affected as our starting salary is much higher than the MOM threshold,” but he also added that local jobseekers sourcing for positions in the service and retail industry could benefit from the impending EP salary raise. Foo Wah Teng, associate director of HR at biotechnology firm Illumina, also pointed out that SMEs may now consider hiring more local talent due to the higher levy that employers have to pay for higher-skilled staff with S-Passes instead of EPs. “The higher EP salary has no impact on how we are hiring now. It will be the status quo,” he said. Read on for additional reactions and exclusive insights on the increase, what it means to locals and whether it could result in an expansion of the job scope of foreign professionals.
Brazil Business Confidence June 2016
In a notable change recorded in June, businesses showed improving outlooks on the current and future economic situation in Brazil, finds business confidence indictor Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV, Fundaçao Getulio Vargas). The index increased a seasonally adjusted 5.3 percent over the previous month, rising from May’s 79.2 points to 83.4 points, in the highest reading since February 2015. The picture is not entirely rosy, however, as the index still remains below the 100-point threshold. Read on for more details.
Huge Beat on the Jobs Report
After two large swings—down in May, then back up in June, the U.S. economy added 255,000 jobs in July, significantly more than economists had expected. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.9 percent. The hospitality and healthcare industries saw the biggest job gains. The second straight month of strong gains and continued wage growth should dampen concerns about a hiring slowdown. Average hourly earnings for U.S. workers increased by 0.3 percent—again, beating expectations. The 2.6 percent year-on-year rate increase is the highest seen since the Great Recession, and higher wages could be driving strong consumer spending. Strong job and wage data spur speculation about the next interest rate hike. While few expect the U.S. Federal Reserve to make that move in September, current data suggest a 50-50 chance of a rate hike in January 2017. Access more information.
Shock for Canada as Unemployment Rises
Analysts had expected Canada to create about 10,000 jobs in July, but the country saw unemployment rise to 6.9 percent instead, with an estimated loss of about 31,200 jobs last month. The most recent employment statistics have come as a shock to some, particularly in Alberta, where the unemployment rate hit a 22-year high of 8.6 per cent. Younger Canadians have been most affected by the job losses, with reports of 28,000 fewer jobs for the 15-24 age group. Access the full HRM Canada report.
15 Words to Cut From Your LinkedIn Profile
Whether you’re looking for a job or trying to widen your circle of connections for potential clients, your profile on LinkedIn is a crucial component to your personal brand. One of the biggest mistakes that professionals make is having a generic summary. With over 414 million members on LinkedIn, how are employers and potential customers going to remember who you are if your profile echoes that of every other industry professional? Filling your summary with buzzwords like “leadership,” “motivated,” “creative,” and “successful” will likely drive prospects away. You can you clean up your profile and remove the buzzwords by using specific and concrete examples that show your leadership, feature your creativity and demonstrate your success. Another suggestion is to include less common synonyms to the most commonly used terms, like “ambitious,” or “determined”. Read on for additional tips for improving your profile.
6 Ways to Promote Internal Talent Mobility in Your Organization
Just over half of U.S. workers are watching the job market or actively seeking a new job, according to a Gallup Workforce Panel study. The reasons vary from the desires to expand knowledge and make better use of particular strengths, to improving talents and networks, or to increasing salaries. But job-hopping can be expensive for companies, and organizations need to find new ways to avoid losing their best and brightest to the competition. The answer may not necessarily be a move up, however, but a move within. Many employees are exploring the benefits of “internal mobility,” or what Bersin by Deloitte defines as a dynamic process for moving talent from role to role at every level. Ensuring employees feel that they have a future within the organization is crucial for maximizing productivity and employee engagement. The first step in establishing such a program is to define and set clear goals and metrics that outline the desired outcome and how success will be measured. Transparency plays a key role, too, so that all associates fully understand the program, how it works, and why it’s important to the organization. Other key components include ensuring the program fully aligns with the organization’s culture and business goals, and that participants have the help they need in identifying high-potential employees to fulfill roles in areas where it makes the most sense, for both the employee and the organization, and providing ample learning and coaching opportunities. Read on for more tips about how internal mobility can help boost employee engagement and retention at the same time.
The Fastest-Growing Job Categories For Flexible Work May Surprise You
More people are working from home now than ever before, but some companies have been better at providing flexible working opportunities than others. A recent report by FlexJobs, an online resource for those seeking flexible work, found that opportunities in government and politics, engineering, project management, communications, and travel and hospitality grew by over 50 percent between July 2015 and June 2016, more than any other career fields. According to FlexJobs, these are defined as professional-level jobs that have a telecommuting, flexible schedule, freelance or part-time component. “Jobs in each of these industries are well-suited to flexible work options because the roles rely heavily on remote-friendly technology—phone, email and Internet,” says Brie Reynolds, the senior career specialist at FlexJobs. Perhaps the most surprising member of the fastest-growing flexible-work category is government and politics. “Government jobs have the stigma of being traditional and not very ‘on trend,' but the federal government in particular has been a champion of telecommuting over the last few years,” says Reynolds. “Federal agencies have made a big push to encourage staffers to telecommute more often, and I think we're seeing that come through in their hiring practices as well,” she says. As employees demand more flexible working options, employers have begun to recognize the benefits of a more remote workforce as well. A 2015 Workplace Flexibility Study revealed 87 percent of HR professionals reported that staff working periodically from home resulted in increased employee satisfaction. It also found that seven out of 10 hiring managers were using workplace flexibility programs as a recruiting and retention tool. Read on for more information and analysis of the flexible work trend.