Survey Finds Recruitment Continues to be Top Challenge for Firms

 MENLO PARK, CA - Finding qualified staff is as high a priority for companies today as it was two years ago, according to a recent survey. When asked to cite the biggest challenge facing their firms in the next 12 months, 27 percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) polled said locating prospective employees - the same number as in a 1998 survey.



The survey was developed by Robert Half, the world's first and largest staffing service specializing in the accounting, finance and information technology fields. It was conducted by an independent research firm and includes responses from 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with more than 20 employees.

CFOs were asked: "Which of the following is the biggest challenge facing your company in the next 12 months?" Their responses:

    2000 1998
Finding qualified staff   27% 27%
Sustaining growth   22% 22%
Government regulation   15% 12%
Meeting customer demands   15% 14%
Competition   11% 20%
Other   5% 2%
Don't know/no answer   5% 3%
    100% 100%

"Continued economic strength and resulting business expansion are generating robust hiring activity nationwide," said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half. "As competition for candidates increases, firms are using a variety of proactive ways to find prospective employees, including employee referral programs, posting positions online, using specialized recruiters, launching direct-mail campaigns and participating in job fairs."

Messmer noted that competition from other firms appears to be less of a concern for companies compared to two years ago. Only 11 percent of executives ranked competition as their biggest challenge, down from 20 percent in 1998.

Robert Half has more than 270 locations in North America, Europe and Australia, and offers online job search services at



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