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Talent shortage and employee turnover continue to be the biggest challenges for HR practitioners

ManpowerGroup Bulgaria conducts numerous human capital management studies on a national level. In the context of the ever-changing environment of the labour market key to a successful business are high-level awareness, excellent knowledge of new trends and established practices, and sharing experience.

“What is the role of corporate HR specialists/departments?” and “What challenges are they facing today?” were the two main questions we aimed at answering by conducting the HR Screening 2021 in the period January-March 2021.


The purpose of the study is to provide up-to-date data on the state of the HR sector in Bulgaria and on their basis to propose applicable solutions that will contribute to the higher efficiency of organizations and HR departments themselves.


The most important conclusions of the study can be summarized in three main points:

  • Talent shortage and employee turnover continue to be the biggest challenges for HR practitioners

Working with international teams and human resources policies also finds a place in the Top 5 of the challenges. More than 2/3 of the respondents working in international organizations share that their work is directly related to HR policies and management abroad.


Sharing good practices, using the experience of other countries, and meeting international standards are prerequisites for good quality human capital management. On the other hand, this way of working could also bring negatives such as lack of adaptability to the specifics of local markets, and insufficient opportunity for solutions tailored to the specifics of the particular country and it can even act as a creativity blocker for local HR practitioners.


  • 73% of the respondents state that they find the function of their in-house HR department not just as a supporting but as an integral part of the business.

  • 78% confirm that the HR department stands out as a strong strategic partner of the business or affects the company's operations.

Despite the identified strategic role of HR practitioners, the rest of the survey data show that often their real function in companies is mainly operational.

To overcome this contradiction and to successfully address the main challenges for HR professionals in the face of staff shortages and turnover, the recommendations of ManpowerGroup Bulgaria are:

  • Purposeful strategic work on building and maintaining an excellent employer brand as a mechanism for dealing with the never-ending talent shortage.

  • Development of a competitive internal program for talent retention and development to overcome employee turnover and to effectively retain staff in the long term - key factors for the success of business operations.

  • Operational tasks and day-to-day functions should not shift the focus from strategic and fundamental ones. The active work with a trusted external partner to deal with the cumbersome repetitive operational processes is key in providing the HR department with sufficient free time and resources to perform its strategic functions such as brand positioning and human capital planning and development.

The full analysis and recommendations for employers in Bulgaria can be found here. ManpowerGroupBulgaria_HR_Survey_2021-EN.pdf


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