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The 7th European HR Barometer survey was carried out by Aon Hewitt in cooperation with the European Club for HR between December 2011 and January 2012. In this edition, fifty-two organisations completed the survey. They operate in a wide range of sectors, generating together 517 billion euro of revenues and with a combined total of 2.4 million employees. 62 percent of participating organisations are listed companies. Survey respondents encompass 13 different nationalities. 71 percent are executives and directors with exclusive responsibility for HR at European or global level. For more information, visit: www.aonhewitt.com www.europeanclub-hr.e
7th European HR BarometerPeople First Despite Tough Economic Climate and Pressure on Cost Reduction The impact of measures taken in 2011 to face the Key results economic volatility has already been assessed by a vast majority of respondents (88 percent) and, for two ▪ Deterioration of macro-economic climate reduces but ▪ third of respondents, results seem to largely match doesn’t reverse corporate growth and new employment target objectives. prospects. ▪ HR leaders ready to play an active role to tackle ▪ Most influential policy drivers for HR unemployment of young people. ▪▪ Navigating through the crisis an opportunity for raising HR profile, but too often communication with This year, “cost sensitivity” regains its place as the employees is still poor. most influential factor when designing HR policies. ▪ Up skilling and (non-financial) employee reward are top ▪ The difficulty of having a suitably qualified labour 2012 actions despite pressure on cost reduction. force or in finding the right talent in the right ▪▪ Leadership development, employee engagement and place, followed by challenging productivity and retention confirmed top HR medium-term priorities. profit targets make up the top tier of the list. More ▪▪ HR expected to develop new business competencies astonishing is the very limited consideration given to and reshape its mission. emerging social and political factors such as: ▪▪ HR policy execution continues to lag beyond ▪▪ perceived inequalities, expectations. ▪▪ HR capacity to anticipate needs and influence the ▪▪ increase of retirement age, business agenda still limited. ▪▪ higher ethical standards or social networks. ▪▪ Steady level of cooperation with CEO but trust shrinking. These factors are likely to have a much greater impact ▪▪ Perception of EU activities further declining while on management policies than indicated by HR leaders negative sentiment increases. in the survey. ▪▪ Direct call to policy makers for: - recasting and simplifying EU labour law, - reinforcing financial support in favour of education, Short and medium-term HR policy priorities innovation and research, - removing barriers to cross-border workforce mobility. In the short term, the greatest emphasis for new measures planned in 2012 will be on learning and development programmes (the priority for 69 percent of respondents), followed by actions aiming to betterGrowth prospects reward employee performance. Less frequent but still indicated in the top twelve ranking are; actionsThe majority of HR professionals across Europe expect in favour of the financial participation of employeesthe impact of the downturn on business results to be to business results (21 percent), in favour ofsignificant, but only one third of respondents will see complementary health care (19 percent) and pensionHR programmes affected. Revenues and investment arrangements (13 percent).are expected to grow more moderately than last year. For the longer term (up to 2014) the range ofThe proportion of companies with growth targets priorities on the HR agenda is much broader than wasabove ten percent has shrunk compared to 2011 but the case in previous editions. Nevertheless, the rankingstill much higher than in 2010 and 2009.Meanwhile of the top three priorities is confirmed again this year,67 percent of companies expect a shift in terms of pointing to:origin of revenues from markets outside Europe. ▪▪ leadership development (mentioned by 46 percent), ▪▪ employee engagement (37 percent) andDespite a gloomier macro-economic climate, the ▪▪ talent retention (37 percent).proportion of companies that expect to add new jobsin 2012 has increased to 47 percent and overtakes the The most notable variation compared to last yearnumber of companies foreseeing a reduction of their relates to the second tier of priorities, headed byworkforce (31 percent).