Companies are expressing a preference for Filipino professionals with overseas experience for leadership roles as they continue the shift toward digitalization as well as the rise of shared service hubs, according to global recruitment specialist Robert Walters.
Robert Walters said the Philippine job market is undergoing a transformative phase, marked by the growth of shared service centers and a substantial shift toward digitalization and commercial excellence.
“As international organizations increasingly establish their shared service hubs in key cities like Manila and Cebu, the country’s labor market is reshaping to meet new demands. With more shared services centers sprouting up in the country, Robert Walters Philippines expects that this will drive higher demand for business heads to lead the hub,” it said.
It added that this trend will also lead to the increasing demand for Filipino professionals with overseas experience in leadership roles.
“Organizations across the Philippines are increasingly focusing on hiring Filipino professionals with overseas experience for key leadership roles. This trend, aligning with the nation’s growth aspirations, is creating a dynamic shift in the local job market,” Robert Walters said.
Companies are keen on leveraging these international experiences to drive innovation and competitive advantage in an increasingly globalized business environment.
“Another growing trend we’ve seen is companies sourcing for talent to fill leadership roles through our Balik Bayan Campaign, which connects companies with skilled Filipino professionals based abroad with valuable, overseas work experience,” Robert Walters Philippines director Alejandro Perez-Higuero said.
Citing its salary survey report, Robert Walters shared that there is a remarkable surge in demand for Filipino professionals with overseas experience amid emerging trends.
“In light of emerging trends, the demand for skilled professionals in AI, technology, sustainability, and commercial leadership is expected to soar this year. Companies are increasingly relying on automation and digitalization, driving the need for professionals with international exposure and diverse skill sets,” Robert Walters said.
Robert Walters said 25 percent of employers are currently using AI models to automate routine tasks, with an additional 35 percent planning to do so within a year.
“Interestingly, some employees (43 percent) express little concern over AI impacts despite its role in enhancing their efficiency,” Robert Walters said.
Aside from the allure of overseas experience among employers for key leadership roles, the report highlights the growing emphasis on compensatory benefits.
In response to sustained demand, organizations are poised to offer substantial salary increases, potentially up to 30 percent for job movers, especially in sectors like technology and finance, where skilled professionals are in high demand.
Around 58 percent of the survey respondents said that the primary challenges in talent acquisition across various industries are high salary and benefit expectations, shortage of highly specialized candidates, and a notable concern about the lack of technical skills particularly within the technology sector.
The survey also found that employers have implemented various strategies to retain employees like enhanced learning and development opportunities (72 percent) hybrid work policies (60 percent), and increased wellbeing initiatives (55 percent).
Robert Walters said the most sought-after skill sets include automation, digitalization, technology, and digital competencies, along with commercial leadership and profit and loss management.
“Professionals with international exposure are particularly valued, given their broader market and stakeholder understanding,” the global recruitment specialist said.
Meanwhile, Robert Walters said salaries are projected to remain stable this year, with job movers poised to reap significant rewards amidst evolving market dynamics.
Despite the optimistic job market outlook, there remains a notable discord between employers and employees regarding compensation, benefits, and work-life balance preferences.