Robert Half 2Q15 Earnings Call Notes

Strong growth in the US as skilled professional labor markets are tight

“Year-over-year revenue growth rates were the strongest in the United States, where skilled professional talent is currently at a premium as a result of the tightening labor market. This is particularly true in the technology staffing area, where we have invested heavily over the past few years.”

Seeing more complex IT staffing needs in Middle markets

“Middle market accounts, we’re seeing more complex IT staffing needs that have been the case in the recent past and with that there is demand for mobility, cloud, security, app and web development, data analytics, the type of demand you typically have seen only at larger companies. So, given that demand that’s drifted into our sweet spot, we’re doing quite well with that and we continue to invest and that’s our expectation for the second half of the year.”

Wage inflation has historically given us an opportunity to increase margins too

“We do indeed, and not only traditionally have we passed it through, it’s given us an opportunity to expand our margins a bit as well. And in fact that’s just what we’ve done so far in this cycle and our pay bill spreads are approaching all time high pay bill spreads.”

We don’t see any slowdown in sight for our labor types

“we don’t see any slowdown in sight with where we already are, which is pretty balanced between internal audit, financial services, regulation, and IT’s, security, and controls. We think there is a nice runway where we already are, you’ve got things like new rev coming on board. Although that has been pushed back a year to 2018, although some companies are already doing diagnostics related work. So, data analytics is something else that we’re doing some investing in there, small currently, but we’re optimistic at what that might become. But the point is we think where we are has legs”

Perm placements are strong and continue to firm

“The market continues strong and firm. We have made headcount investments, clearly that’s a factor in our growth but as we’ve talked about a few quarters now in a row, full time demand for staff the labor markets in the US are clearly improving and you see that first and foremost, which typical in our cycle in Perm placement fulltime hiring.”

Organic growth has contributed to our high ROE

“You’re correct and that we have focused on organic growth for a long time that’s contributed significantly into our very large returns on equity which all by the way was 36% for the quarter which we’re very proud of.’