32% of U.S. Businesses Plan to Hire Additional Staff in 2011

Bi-annual survey shows more than a third of companies globally intend to increase headcount in 2011.

DALLAS, Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Businesses across the globe are now looking to hire new staff, in one of the first signs that global economic recovery and growth is on a sustainable upward trajectory. This is the key finding of the bi-annual Regus Business Tracker survey that interviews more than 10,000 businesses around the world.

The fact that companies are looking to hire additional staff will be regarded as a significant indicator that the mindset of organizations has shifted toward investment in growth through human capital.  Regus, a global provider of flexible workplace solutions, found that more than a third of companies [36 percent net(1)] surveyed said they intend to increase headcount. U.S. business was close to the global average with almost a third (32 percent net) of companies preparing to add new staff in 2011.

These findings are particularly significant, coming in the wake of recent observations from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and International Labour Organization (ILO) that global unemployment has reached record proportions in the last three years (up to 210 million since 2007). These organizations have warned about potential problems for national economies if this trend continues.  Unemployment reduces national taxation income and increases public spending.  The findings of the Regus Business Tracker provide important evidence that the world unemployment situation may be set to ease in 2011.

The survey canvassed the opinions of more than 10,000 senior business people in 78 countries asking them about their current revenue performance, their profitability, their projected future revenues and their wider expectations of national economic growth.  These indicators form the basis for the report's Business Optimism Index, which unusually reflects actual performance as well as near-term outlook.  Globally, this edition of the index revealed a far more positive outlook, with a greater proportion of optimist countries than six months ago. For the U.S. in particular, the global index revealed a bullish rating of 87, up seven points on six months ago.

Sande Golgart, regional vice president for Regus, comments: "The intention to increase headcount is a clear indicator that businesses want to be prepared to grasp the opportunities that recovering markets may throw their way. The U.S. in particular is still suffering from high unemployment levels, at 9.6 percent, although private sector payroll continues to increase slightly and this finding should be taken as a positive indication for employment.(2)"

"In spite of this optimism, our research also highlights that 41 percent of companies are still looking to reduce their overhead, through means other than reducing staff.  This reveals an attitude of cautious optimism.  As companies look to find economies in their own operations, we are likely to see more and more organizations offering flexible working practices to their existing or prospective employees in a bid to achieve a better work-life balance and run a leaner organization."

About Regus

Regus is the world's largest provider of workplace solutions, with products and services ranging from fully equipped offices to professional meeting rooms, business lounges and the world's largest network of video communication studios. Regus enables people to work their way, whether it's from home, on the road or from an office. Customers such as Google, GlaxoSmithKline, and Nokia join hundreds of thousands of growing small and medium businesses that benefit from outsourcing their office and workplace needs to Regus, allowing them to focus on their core activities.

More than 800,000 customers a day benefit from Regus facilities spread across a global footprint of 1,100 locations in 500 cities and 85 countries, which allow individuals and companies to work wherever, however and whenever they want to. Regus was founded in Brussels, Belgium in 1989, is headquartered in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information please visit: www.regus.com

To download a copy of the full report please visit www.regus.presscentre.com

(1) The net employment figures in the Regus Business Tracker consist of: (% of companies intending to increase staff over the next 6 months) minus (% of companies intending to cut staff over the next 6 months)

(2) http://www.bls.gov/cps/