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Recession still troubles employers, survey finds

February 19 2014

The recession still lingers for many U.S. employers, according to a study from CareerBuilder. Fifty-eight percent of employers said that when it comes to their business, it feels like the recession is not over. Among small businesses with 50 or fewer employees, the percentage rose to 66 percent.

Stagnant or declining sales and human capital issues are among the concerns employers voiced in the study.

“Many companies are still struggling to regain footing that was lost during the recession,” said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder. “Only 28 percent of employers reported that their business has returned to normal or is better than it was before 2007. Retention and productivity issues are top of mind as companies deal with constricting budgets, reorgs and long vacancies, and look to engage with current and potential employees in a more meaningful way.”

More than half of employers say they currently have positions for which they can’t find qualified candidates. In addition to recruiting high-skill applicants, some of the top staffing challenges companies say they are facing in 2014 include:

  • Retaining top talent, 32 percent
  • Lifting employee morale, 31 percent
  • Providing competitive compensation, 27 percent
  • Worker burnout, 26 percent
  • Maintaining productivity levels, 25 percent
  • Managing organizational changes, 20 percent
  • Employee engagement, 17 percent
  • Providing upward mobility, 17 percent
  • Providing enough training opportunities to employees, 15 percent
  • Cutting down on cost-per-hire, 12 percent
  • Lack of succession planning, 11 percent
  • Limited recruitment budget, 11 percent
  • Adapting to new ways to source/recruit candidates, 8 percent

The survey was conducted online by Harris Interactive on behalf of CareerBuilder among 2,201 hiring managers and human resource professionals. The survey was conducted between Nov. 6 and Dec. 2, 2013.


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