Perception often leads to reality. To discover how the collective wisdom views the year ahead, SelectLeaders Network, in cooperation
with the 10 leading real estate Professional Associations, whose Career Centers are powered by SelectLeaders, conducts an annual
industry-wide survey the last weeks in December. This year, a rich mix of over 1,300 real estate professionals and employers, principals,
top-line managers and HR executives, delivered some very interesting insights and perspectives on the upcoming year.
"Real estate companies are now very lean and will hire,
but hire carefully, in 2014." This respondent's perspective
on slow and steady Real Estate industry hiring in 2014 was
shared by 91% of the respondents - with 67.3% believing
hiring will increase in 2014, while 23.5% believe hiring will
remain at 2013 levels. One respondent who was hired
in late December explained, "Many more companies are
looking to hire, but many of the companies I interviewed with
do not have a sense of urgency in hiring new employees."
The most significant change is how compensation is viewed.
Before the downturn for many, compensation was primarily
based on experience and location, and centered on the
individual's performance. In the New Economy, for the
first time in the history of our survey, increasing numbers
of employers and employees reported compensation
at all levels is based on increased revenue production.
"Growth in revenue is demanded, with growth in head count
constrained," one respondent summed up. Another said,
"Compensation is rising but workload expectations per
person have increased. Assistants and support positions
are significantly down. Every employee must contribute to
the bottom line." Another noted, "Employees that increase
Net Operating Income/ EBITDA are rewarded."
Another "first" in the New Economy is the difficulty of finding
entry-level talent. As one respondent framed it, "There
remains a shortage of young talent with any experience,
largely due to the lack of opportunities graduating students
have had over the course of the last 5 years. We, like
others, tend to be reluctant to train new talent when we have
to remain lean."
Multi-faceted skillsets have become a pre-requisite in the
New Economy. Over 80% reported that their company's
new hires are expected to wear more than one hat. "Less
people doing more, and still being told, 'you're lucky to
have a job'," many reported. Yet 74% believed that
compensation for new hires has either decreased (25%)
or remained the same (49%). Only 26% believed that
compensation for new hires has increased, along with the
requirement for increased skillsets. As one employer wrote,
"Individuals with good experience who can take on more
than one task are exceling."
A substantial 67% of real estate professionals expect
their total compensation to increase in 2014. There is a
basis for this optimism. The previous year, over half of our
respondents (54%) received a bonus at the end of 2012,
and also a salary increase in 2013.
It is interesting to note that 67% think their compensation
will increase in 2014 and the same number (67%), think
their company's hiring will increase. Could this reflect the
percentage of our industry that has recovered? 41% believe
their company's compensation is back to 2008 levels, while
the majority (59%) says it is not.
What have we learned? "Hiring good people will once
again create a wage war, however, if people are smart
they will realize this is only a short term gain... stability and
ability to weather storms is more important than immediate
wage increases." Please scroll down to view more of our
industry's insights in their own words: "My salary has been
cut in half since 2008 ... the government can count me
as employed but that is only half the story ... and I am not
alone." "The worst of times are behind us. More capital
across the globe is being allocated back to commercial real
estate ... look forward to an exciting 2014."