Finding work is going to get more difficult in the remaining months of the year.

A report by Vietnamworks job search site says the online labour demand index dropped by 18 percent in the first half of the year against the corresponding period last year.

The decrease reflects economic recession, which has forced many companies to hire less people, it said.

The report found reduced labour demand in 44 of 59 fields in the study.

The field of architecture and design topped the list with a 52 percent reduction over the same period last year, followed by real estate with 50 percent, construction with 49 percent, accounting and auditing with 37 percent and accounting and finance with 36 percent.

Pham Thi Kim Dung, marketing manager of Vietnamworks, said these are the fields hit hardest by the continuing economic decline.

The report also said in the remaining 15 fields, labour demand increased. These included luxury products with a 41 percent increase; hi-tech, 34 percent; household goods and personal services, 25 percent; Internet and communications 10 percent; and IT and software, 9 percent.

According to the report, Ho Chi Minh City , which had the highest online labour demand in the country in the first half, also showed a 12 percent fall over the same period last year, while Hanoi posted a reduction of 26 percent.

Slower recruitment was also seen in Da Nang City and the provinces of Binh Duong and Bac Ninh, the report said.

Tran Anh Tuan, deputy director of HCM City Labour Market Information and Labour Demand Forecasting Centre, said the decrease in labour demand was caused by the economic turmoil.

Many businesses have limited production, suspended operations, especially those in production and processing, he said. The economic slowdown has also forced firms to cut costs, thereby reducing the number of employees, he added.

Tuan said the demand for manual workers has also dropped in the textile and garment and leather and footwear sectors, not to mention machinery, metallurgy, chemicals, food and electronics industries.

Supply will increase in the second half of the year as a large number of graduates enter the labour market, making the competition over jobs even more intense, the centre predicted.-VNA