In 2023, the demand for HR professionals remained significantly high, and according to the latest salary survey from staffing specialist Walters People, this trend is expected to continue into 2024.
Stephanie Cnops, Principal and specialized in HR recruitment, analyses which HR specialists are currently in high demand and takes a look at the expected salary developments within HR for the upcoming year.
Persistent talent shortage
In 2023, the demand for HR professionals remained high, with a peak in the number of advertised vacancies in July and October. There is particularly high demand for HR officers, talent acquisition specialists, and especially payroll specialists.
Stephanie Cnops emphasizes that the demand for experienced payroll specialists with at least 3 to 5 years of experience is not only due to their autonomy and maturity but also their in-depth knowledge of employment legislation and multilingual abilities. Their efforts and investments in fostering loyalty make these payroll experts exceptionally valuable for organisations.
The need for HR talent is significant across various sectors. HR service providers, recruitment agencies, and organisations active in financial services, IT, the food industry, and biotechnology are actively seeking suitable candidates.
The demand for HR professionals varies significantly by region, with Flanders leading the way. Antwerp and Brussels each account for 20% of the demand, while West Flanders and East Flanders represent 15% each. Flemish Brabant follows with 11%, while only 10% of the advertised HR vacancies are located in Wallonia.
Dynamic job market
"Although it's noteworthy that 74% of HR professionals are immediately recruited on a permanent contract, the short average tenure of just 1.2 years poses a real challenge for employers. Despite employment stability, retaining these highly sought-after professionals remains a complex issue, requiring employers to develop strategies to ensure long-term engagement," explains Stephanie.
Opportunities for graduates
Despite the ongoing shortage of experienced HR talent, the dynamic job market also offers promising opportunities for graduates. With an abundance of HR vacancies, they have the chance to choose from various options. "This is also positive for employers," says Stephanie, "as beginners bring fresh perspectives and creativity in optimizing the package of fringe benefits to attract and retain talent."
2024 Salary expectations within HR
HR professionals are aware of their attractiveness in the job market, resulting in relatively high salaries for beginners. For more experienced HR professionals, we also expect salaries to slightly increase in 2024, primarily for roles within payroll.
2024 salaries for the most demanded roles within HR:
For more insights into the job market and other salaries within human resources, you can request free access to Walters People's digital salary survey tool.