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Demand rising for executives

Associated Press

NEW YORK – With demand for corporate executives on the rise, it will take more money to get high-ranking employees to switch jobs this year, according to a report released Monday.

Last year, demand for executives increased 12 percent, according to employment search firms surveyed by ExecuNet, a Norwalk, Conn.-based provider of services for executives and executive recruiters.

The rise marks the first increase in demand for executives in several years. In 2003, search assignments for executives dropped 4 percent, following a 20 percent decline in 2002 and a 17 percent decline in 2001.

This year, search assignments for corporate executives are expected to rise as much as 23 percent, according to the search firms surveyed.

ExecuNet, which has been collecting data for 13 years on demand for executive jobs, interviewed 1,489 executives and 223 search firms and corporate recruiters. The survey was conducted online in January.

Meanwhile, executive job searchers expect to be paid more for switching jobs this year.

Employed executives said they expect a pay increase of about 4.8 percent to take on a new job this year compared with expectations of a 1 percent pay raise to do the same last year.

Unemployed executives said they would accept a 1 percent pay decrease for a new job this year compared with the average acceptance of a 6 percent pay cut reported in last year’s survey.

Fewer executives surveyed said they plan to leave their current positions this year compared with last year. Seventy-seven percent of employed executives surveyed said they plan to leave their job in the next six months compared with 94 percent who said the same last year.

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