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InHunt World is a Global Headhunting Network that is currently active in over 40 countries. During this autumn, we are going to go through these countries one by one, usually interviewing the Country Manager or the CEO of the country in question.

We came all the way up to Moscow this afternoon, to interview one of our most experienced Partners in our Headhunting Network, Mr. Rustam Barnokhodzhaev. Rustam has been the Head of Executive Search for Unity Recruitment Experts for almost 8 years now. Recently they created a more specific Executive Search division called U-Team, which Rustam is also heading.

It is sometimes hard, to fully grasp the actual size of this gigantic country, to put it in perspective, the size of Europe is a bit more than 10 M km2 whereas the size of Russia, prepare…, is 17.1 M km2. So not exactly double, but almost.

Let’s begin with a short overview of the Candidate market in Russia and the situation of the Recruitment world.
In July 2021, the unemployment rate in Russia stood at 4.5 percent. The country’s unemployment situation deteriorated in the summer of 2020, though the rate has started to recover since then. To compare, in July 2020, 6.3 percent of the workforce aged 15 years and older nationwide were unemployed (source).

The World Bank said it now expects Russia’s gross domestic product to grow by 4.3% in 2021 and 2.8% in 2022 versus 3.2% and 3.2%, respectively than it forecast in June. This year, the economy “is supported by an earlier rebound in domestic demand and elevated energy prices,” the World Bank said in a report on Europe and Central Asia. In 2022, economic growth will slow as demand stabilizes and industrial commodity prices can go down, it said.
“The escalation of geopolitical tensions, including additional U.S. sanctions imposed in 2021, low vaccination rates, and increases in the policy rate from record lows are weighing on the growth outlook.” (source)

Headhunting and Recruitment Market in Russia

Russia’s fiscal outcomes worsened in 2020 but improved in the first quarter of 2021. In 2020, the federal budget was hit by pandemic-induced shocks and registered a deficit of Rub4.1 trillion (3.8 percent of GDP), compared to a surplus of Rub1.9 billion (1.8 percent of GDP) in 2019.

The Russian banking sector has been resilient so far, but medium-term impacts remain to be seen. Credit growth has been supported by economic recovery and public credit support programs. Non-performing loans remained largely unchanged, at about 9% of total loans, in 2021.

Although employment is still below pre-pandemic levels, the labor market began showing some signs of improvement by the end of 2020. The national unemployment rate has been declining since last August, when it peaked at 6.4%, to 5.4% in March 2021. However, this rate is still 0.7 percentage points higher than in the same month of the previous year, which means that labor markets are not yet where they were before the pandemic.

Average real wages increased by 1.7% between 2019 and 2020, but masked important differences across economic activities: sectors that suffered the largest employment losses also had the largest real wage losses. Real wages increased in agriculture, telecommunications, and health services, but fell in many other sectors, with large declines in hospitality services, construction, culture/sports/leisure activities, and commerce. (source)

Next, we are going to interview the Head of Executive Search of U-Team (UNITY Recruitment Experts & Business Resources), Mr. Rustam Barnokhodzhaev. Rustam has a really long experience in Human Resources Recruitment, both in Russia and the United States and he accepted to meet us in Moscow today, for our latest Blog Interview.

How have you been Rustam? We are happy to meet you here in Moscow today, before we get started how are you and how was the summer?

Thanks for coming all the way here! I’m doing great thanks for asking. Summer was a bit slower than usual. A little bit more activity compared to spring but still slower than previous years. Apart from that, all great, I was able to disconnect a bit during my summer break and enjoy some sun, now we are ready for the upcoming business year.

How would you comment on the first half of 2021?

The economy, in general, was growing. The growth was mostly in the heavy industry sector. We got many new search assignments in this sector. Companies mostly were looking for engineering positions. We did well…

How do you see the second part of 2021? And what about 2022?

The upward trend continues now and probably will for another few months. We can see the start of 2022 really busy already and we have many new clients looking forward to opening offices in the Netherlands and hiring in big numbers next year.
The second part of 2021 is going to be better than the first. Industries are growing and compensating for lack of growth during the previous period caused by the pandemic.

What are the industries that are hiring the most?

Several industries are growing rapidly: IT, Pharma, Mining, Energy, FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods).

What are the roles that companies are needing the most?

Companies are mostly hiring engineers, digital marketing specialists.

What about the candidate market?

The candidate market has changed: many candidates got used to remote work and now they request only remote work terms without any flexibility. Due to the high demand for IT specialists they are asking for a conspicuous salary increase. On the other hand, employed candidates are scared to change jobs.

It is now more difficult to attract candidates for a change.

Thank you for your time Rustam!

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