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Europe – Senior talent seeking more international opportunities

17 December 2013

Senior-level communications professionals are being driven by international opportunities and company culture in their job hunt, according to the latest research by specialist PR and communications recruiter, VMA Group.

In their survey, ‘Understanding the European Communications Labour Market’, which questioned executive-level PR, communications, and marketing professionals across Europe, VMA Group found that the chance to work across borders was of real appeal to senior-level talent.

Of those surveyed, over two-thirds (69%)  reported they would be willing to relocate to a new country for a role, a critical statistic for hiring managers who, according to VMA Group, often limit recruitment solutions to a national rather than international level.

A staggering 81% of respondents acknowledged that, if they were to change roles, they would prefer to switch to an international organisation, presenting a significant challenge to businesses with a smaller, more domestic reach.

The survey also revealed that passive candidates form a large part of the talent pool, with 48% of respondents reporting they would consider an opportunity, but are not ‘actively looking’ for a new role. This further highlights the complexities of finding the best senior-level talent European organisations face in attracting senior level communications experts.

Interestingly, company culture, development potential, and the management style of a potential company were ranked as the three most important factors for moving jobs, with salary coming fourth. Management of a team is clearly also extremely important,  with 90% of respondents reporting they would like to stay in a management role or start managing people if they were to change jobs.

Willem de Ruijter, Head of Mainland Europe at VMA Group, commented on these results: “It is clear that international borders are becoming much less important to senior communications professionals, but this demand to work across borders presents a significant challenge for HR and resourcing teams.  Top talent now seek so much more from employers than an increase in salary, and quite often will not actively look for their new role despite being willing to move. Understandably, this makes sourcing top senior level communications talent a huge challenge across Europe.”

Julia Meighan, CEO of VMA Group, added: “Recruitment processes will only become more complicated as the economy continues to pick up and job opportunities grow. Resourcing teams need to be developing executive level talent attraction strategies that not only appeal across borders, but also address the key career motivators of this talent pool.”

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