11% of Hong Kong’s sales and marketing workforce lost by leaving the city

The brain drain continues to impact various businesses in Hong Kong. The sales and marketing industry is losing skilled workers as more than 10% of practitioners have left the city, according to a recent survey by the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce (HKGCC).

The survey found that among surveyed companies in the city, they had lost about 11% of sales and marketing practitioners. However, the sales and marketing industry was not the hardest hit sector, as the engineering and technical sector lost 28% of the total workforce, the lowest category. highest of all industries, followed by finance and accounting (21%), IT (21%). %), and senior management and general management (20%).

A total of 38% of respondents said they had been affected by the loss of migrant workers to varying degrees, ranging from medium (24%), high (12%) to very high (2%). Large enterprises suffered a greater impact than SMEs as 45% of these organizations said they had been negatively affected. By comparison, only 29% of SMEs say they have been impacted.
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Although more than half (58%) of respondents expect emigration-induced turnover to stabilize in 2022, 35% of respondents were less optimistic and anticipated more skills shortages.

Hong Kong SMEs were more confident, as 74% of them believed that their turnover due to emigration would remain the same over the next 12 months. Only 43% of large companies share the same idea and the same proportion of large companies think the situation will get worse in the next 12 months.
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“Hong Kong is facing an exodus of educated workers on an unprecedented scale since the early 1990s. This will have an impact on the economy. Given the importance of human capital in Hong Kong’s service and knowledge-based economy, it is a worrying situation if we cannot stem the current brain drain,” said Peter Wong, Chairman of HKGCC.

Middle-aged employees were more likely to leave Hong Kong, as respondents said the “30-39” and “40-49” age groups were the top two categories leaving the city. In terms of organizational hierarchy, middle managers and first-level managers were more likely to leave than junior officers and senior management positions.
hkgcc stat pic4To address the problem of exodus of staff, 61% of large companies chose to strengthen succession planning and recruitment efforts, while 51% said they would increase automation and digitization. However, only 28% and 35% of SMEs respectively said they would make similar investments. At the same time, large companies are ready to increase their budgets with 39% and 37% of respondents respectively saying they were considering “increasing salaries and benefits” and “planning for retention”. The corresponding responses from SMEs were only 13% and 11% respectively.

The survey also investigated why employees leave Hong Kong. The top three reasons were: better child development (57%), political considerations (45%) and better quality of life (27%). Only 10% of employees say they are looking for better social mobility abroad.
hkgcc stat pic5Finally, the loss of skills and knowledge, the increase in vacancies and the addition of an additional workload for existing employees were the three main challenges for companies facing employee exodus.
hkgcc stat pic6“Global competition for talent is already acute and Hong Kong cannot afford to lose the race to attract and retain talent. To stem the tide of worker departures, it is essential that the government regularly reviews its policies to ensure that Hong Kong remains an attractive place to live, work, study and raise a family,” Wong added.

(Photo courtesy: 123rf)

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