The global water talent market looks increasingly constrained, with a shortage of mid-level talent even in countries with high levels of unemployment. I cannot emphasise enough that you should build high salaries and talent-shortages into your business planning.
We are observing the most severe talent shortages in Brazil and China, where it is very difficult for global companies to identify English speaking talent with a reasonable level of techical knowledge and relevant experience. I will reiterate that companies should not expect to pay substantially lower salaries for high-impact professionals in China than they would in Europe or North America.
In Brazil they can expect to pay more.
Australia continues to lead the world on water industry salaries, with another resources investment boom working its way through the economy; mine infrastructure construction is sucking up the tiny amount of spare capacity that was there previously. Expect to pay between 1.5x and 2.5x what you would pay in Europe or North America for junior-mid-level Engineering talent.
For high-impact, strategic hires (H2Otalent‘s specialty) you should be prepared to offer both competitive salaries and a compelling organisational structure and strategy. See my earlier post on attracting leaders here.
Even more critically you should have a policy in place for opportunistically hiring and utilising water leadership talent even when you do not have a formal vacancy in your organisation. The alternative is to make-do with whoever happens to be available when you have a vacancy, which could mean the best people going to your competitors.