Contingent workforce buyers globally will spend an estimated $429 billion worldwide on workers procured through staffing firms in 2016, according to the “Global Staffing Industry Market Estimates and Forecast: October 2017 Update” released last week by Staffing Industry Analysts. Buyers in three countries — the US, Japan and the UK — made up a majority of the spend, and the top 15 countries combined accounted for 88% of total global staffing revenue.

This spend is slightly less than half of the estimated value of the workforce solutions ecosystem, which Staffing Industry Analysts estimates at $989 billion in its recent related update report.

SIA predicts global staffing spend to grow by 6% this year compared with 5% last year. Growth in the US, the world’s largest staffing market, is expected to remain flat at 3% this year. Staffing Industry Analysts expects growth in Japan, the second largest market, to accelerate slightly to 7% in this year from 6% last year.

“Staffing markets are continuing to evolve worldwide,” Staffing Industry Analysts President Barry Asin said. “Our current forecast report reflects a favorable mix of trends for most of the EMEA region, as well as in many APAC markets. The global staffing industry is poised to meet the opportunities and the challenges it faces as it advances contingent workforce solutions across the ecosystem.”

Published twice annually, the forecast report covers estimates and forecasts for the staffing industry by revenue and segment, with additional labor market information including regional and historical data and a ranking of the 15 largest countries in terms of staffing industry revenue.