Firms in Hong Kong are extending the length of contract work and offering higher pay packages, and are more likely to offer them full-time placements at the end of their contract.
Polling Hong Kong based contractors across a range of disciplines, research from Morgan McKinley found the majority (53%) of contractors are being employed on one year contracts in 2014, compared to 29% who were employed for the same duration in 2013.
While salary remained steady for contract workers, with marginal differences from 2013 to 2014, there were a higher number of high earning contractors in 2014 than in 2013.
One in five contractors earned more than HK$60,000 (S$10,000) per month in 2014 – a 7% rise from 2013.
“In terms of an outlook for 2015, we predict that the hiring of IT, finance, operations, projects, HR and office support contractors will continue to increase,” Nick Lambe, managing director, Morgan McKinley Hong Kong, said.
“In addition, experienced Hong Kong professionals who find themselves job seeking in 2015 should consider the contracting route, as we are seeing the majority of contract placements being offered permanent roles by their employer when their assignment is complete.”
He attributed the rise in contractor salaries to more specialist projects and/or skills sets being in demand in the market.
“In Hong Kong, contractors have traditionally been regarded as emergency cover for straight forward tasks rather than highly skilled experts who can add value to projects or seasonal variations,” he said.
“Whilst this paints a rather gloomy picture of contracting, our latest statistics clearly show that the tide is turning as we are seeing more and more contractors viewed as essential workforce for seasonal variations or maternity cover for niche skill sets.”