TOTAL WORKFORCE INDEX

TOP FIVE MARKET
COMPARISONS

The markets that rank highest in the Total Workforce Index™ are those with the highest relative performance across all four categories. The ability to perform well across two or more of the four main categories, in addition to having minimal regulatory impact and large workforce availability, make these five markets the most generally favorable for workforce engagement.

Comparison of the Top Five Markets ranked by Total Workforce Index

The top 5 markets, based on the rankings of the Total Workforce Index™ are led by three Asian Pacific (APAC) markets: Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore. Rounding out the top five are the United States and United Kingdom. Hong Kong rises to secure the top ranked position and New Zealand moves into second from top ranking in the 2017 Total Workforce Index™. This change is due to a significant drop in the Cost Efficiency category for New Zealand coupled with a slight decrease in Availability score year-over-year.

Size of the bubble reflects the Relative Availability of each market, while the color reflects Relative Regulation

  • Minimal Regulatory Impact
  • Moderate Regulatory Impact
  • Restrictive Regulatory Impact

The top five markets consistently perform well and have been ranked in the top ten markets for a minimum of the previous three years. This is the first year, however, since 2015 that New Zealand has not secured the highest ranking. Regardless of the addition of new factors to the index and slight changes to weightings of the factors within the categories, these markets perform well since these markets are all maturing at a consistent pace. These five markets are also so valuable from a workforce availability, size and skills perspective that these factors outweigh any factors related to lack of cost efficiency.

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Comparison of the Top Five Markets for Workforce Availability

Markets scoring favorably in the Availability category are those with the highest availability of skilled workers with a high level of English proficiency, as well as other factors favored by organizations hiring in the current labor market. Though these markets have scored most positively in the Availability category, they are not necessarily the largest or most mature markets as defined by Total Workforce Index™

Size of the bubble reflects the Relative Availability of each market, while the color reflects Relative Regulation

  • Minimal Regulatory Impact
  • Moderate Regulatory Impact
  • Restrictive Regulatory Impact

Compared to 2017, there are some significant changes to the top five markets in availability. While Ireland continues to hold the top ranking in the category, New Zealand and the United States drop out of the top five this year. Sweden and Singapore claim fourth and fifth, up from sixth and seventh in 2017, respectively.

The United States experienced a significant decrease in Availability score between 2017 and 2018 while the score in Availability for New Zealand decreased just enough to allow a small increase for Sweden to propel this market into the top five. Singapore’s score remained unchanged year-over-year but the market benefited from the scores decreasing in both New Zealand and the United States to move up one spot to fifth.

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Comparison of the Top Five Markets for Workforce Cost Efficiency

Traditionally, the lowest cost markets also tend to be some of the least mature and generally have less restrictive regulation and availability. The Philippines is an exception. Last year, the Philippines passed legislation to ban subcontracting and enforce restrictions on contract terminations. This speaks to another common trend among emerging markets, as investment increases in a market so too does the regulatory impact in that market.

Size of the bubble reflects the Relative Availability of each market, while the color reflects Relative Regulation

  • Minimal Regulatory Impact
  • Moderate Regulatory Impact
  • Restrictive Regulatory Impact

These and other changes in the Philippines have resulted in a decrease in cost efficiency overall. This held the Philippines at third and allowed Morocco to rise from fourth to second place in the top five markets for cost efficiency this year. Despite being very appealing from a cost perspective, markets such as Morocco do not present significant opportunity for investment due to a lack of skilled and English-proficient talent, a small workforce and a restrictive regulatory climate.

Chile dropped from second to fourth due to an increase in the factors related to average wages and the inclusion of factors like business startup costs in the weightings of the Total Workforce Index™ metrics for this category. Vietnam makes its way into the top five this year due to a significant decrease in wages, despite a small increase to the minimum wage.

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Comparison of the Top Five Markets for Workforce Regulation

Favorable regulatory environments are created when many types of workforce engagement are available to organizations and maximum contract lengths, notice periods and severance requirements are minimal or not required. The regulatory factors measured by the Total Workforce Index™ include topics such as severance and pension ages, geopolitical factors, contract limits and notice periods.

Size of the bubble reflects the Relative Availability of each market, while the color reflects Relative Regulation

  • Minimal Regulatory Impact
  • Moderate Regulatory Impact
  • Restrictive Regulatory Impact

The top five markets in the regulatory category remain unchanged year-over-year which indicates stability in the regulation of each of the global workforce markets. Similar geopolitical factors in the top five markets allow them to maintain their previous rankings year-over-year. Some markets in the remainder of the top 10, however, did shift in ranking but not enough to impact the rankings in the top five.

More relaxed regulatory factors make these and similar markets more competitive for future investment in local employment. This is especially important in markets where the competition for certain skills is high. Some of these markets also have legislation that gives preferential visa treatment to immigrants with skills considered desirable in the current hiring market.

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Comparison of the Top Five Markets for Workforce Productivity

Productivity is a category influenced by all three of the other categories. When the perfect mix of availability, cost efficiency, and regulation align with workforce planning initiatives, optimal productivity goals can be met or in some cases exceeded. However, the top five markets in Productivity may not necessarily be the most productive markets for organizations in all industries and sectors of business.

Size of the bubble reflects the Relative Availability of each market, while the color reflects Relative Regulation

  • Minimal Regulatory Impact
  • Moderate Regulatory Impact
  • Restrictive Regulatory Impact

Changes in the top five rankings year-over-year include a ranking swap between Israel and Singapore to second and third, respectively. Influencing this change are improvements in technology infrastructure and wider adoption of technology in Israel. In addition, subtle changes to the factors that influence Productivity rankings were significant enough to add up to a shift in the ranked position of these two markets. A standard workday of nine hours and no major restrictions on night work, among other Productivity factors, influence a higher ranking for Israel compared to similar markets.

Canada drops out of the top five this year, with the United Arab Emirates rising into fifth place. Improvements to infrastructure efficiency and the number of standard work hours per week boosted the United Arab Emirates score in Productivity. Canada remained unchanged year-over-year across all productivity metrics. The shifts seen in the top markets for productivity year-over-year are indicative of the fact that a combination of several seemingly insignificant changes to multiple factors can have a greater overall effect on the market rankings within a category.

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