The pandemic prompts progress in Turkey

The Turkish government’s quick response to COVID-19, with testing, isolation, lockdowns and travel restrictions, meant that more businesses were operating remotely where possible.Businesses are under more pressure, much like in other countries, but most are agile enough to keep themselves stable. In 2021, we expect more demand for talent in most sectors, despite the pandemic continuing.

Trends and challenges

Digital transformation has occurred across all industries following the boom in remote work, and ecommerce will continue to be a revenue driver for businesses providing convenience for consumers.

With Turkish lira falling in value, we expect costs to rise for local businesses that rely on imported raw materials – this will lead to a general decrease in the availability and sales of consumer products. Those who have worked during the pandemic and demonstrated their resilience are highly desirable and will be successful in finding work.

Skills employers are looking for

Communication and teamwork are important in most sectors at present. For managerial roles, developing virtual teambuilding and effective remote onboarding skills will be crucial as remote work is likely to continue for many professionals.

The demand for digital customer experience and data analytics roles has increased, as companies focus more on ecommerce to maintain their sales during the pandemic. Those who have proven themselves to be self-motivated, independent, agile, and reliable will also stand out among their competitors.

Salaries and benefits

A recent survey conducted by REED found that 32% of respondents would like to have flexible benefits, but only 9% receive this option. Everyone will have different needs and preferences when it comes to benefits. Employers giving candidates options to create a bespoke package is becoming more commonplace.

While benefits have become far more important to professionals, a competitive salary is also a top priority. 66% of respondents in Turkey said they were unhappy with their salary, with 40% of those citing that it did not increase at a similar rate to the cost of living. Employers should review their salary and benefit offerings to attract and retain talent. 

Market insights

The pandemic has not stopped Turkey’s year-on-year salary growth – in any of the most popular roles across the board.


With the influence of research and development activities and investment incentives growing in Turkey, innovation is becoming more important, and there is greater diversity in the engineering roles available.

Salaries for plant directors within senior management average ₺34,130, up from last year’s average of ₺29,000. Also, civil engineers in mid-level management positions can earn up to ₺14,500 (or an average of ₺10,750) – the average salary for this role in 2020 was ₺9,500.

Accountancy & Finance

Accountancy and finance specialists have become more important to businesses’ survival during this tumultuous time – this comes with new challenges, greater demand, and higher salaries.

Financial analysts earned an average of ₺7,750 in 2020 – this year, the average salary for this role has increased to ₺9,000. Chief financial officers can now earn ₺42,750 on average and up to ₺51,500. Last year, this figure was significantly lower, averaging ₺37,500 for this role.

To find out more about the recruitment market in your sector, download our 2021 Turkey Salary Guide now.

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