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World – Skills shortage “acute” with global economies struggling to find talented staff

30 May 2012

A third of employers across the globe have reported skills shortages in their organisation although many employers indicate unfilled positions are expected to have little or no impact on key constituents, such as customers and investors, finds ManpowerGroup in its latest Talent Shortage Survey.

Countries that experience the most difficulty in filling jobs include Japan (81%) and Brazil (71%), followed by Bulgaria (51%), Australia (50%) and the US (49%). On the global scale, many European countries are better off with Ireland reporting the least problems in finding skilled staff (2%) while the Netherlands, Spain, Italy and the UK are also amongst the countries showing fewer problems in filling jobs (all under 14%).

But worryingly some of the largest global economies continue to have problems in filling jobs with at least two in five employers struggling to fill vacancies in Germany, Europe’s largest economy.

“German companies provide too few resources for efficient recruitment despite the acute skills shortage,” commented Managing Director of ManpowerGroup Germany, Vera Calasan.

The most notable skills shortages in Europe are also reported in Romania (45%), Turkey (41%) and Austria (40%). The survey found that in Europe and the Middle East, skilled trades workers, engineers, sales representatives and IT staff are amongst staff most in demand.

But the staffing firm warned that employers should not to put up with the skill shortages and instead develop flexible workforce models consisting of contingent and permanent workers, in order to meet fluctuating demand.

“While the talent mismatch crisis is an old problem, accepting it as the new normal is no way to compete in this increasingly volatile economy,” said Jeffrey A. Joerres, ManpowerGroup Chairman and CEO.

“If employers don't think leaving important positions unfilled is a problem now, they will in the future as unemployment rates fall and skilled talent is harder to come by because they did not prepare for a spike in demand,” Mr Joerres added.

Manpower surveyed nearly 40,000 employers in 41 countries and territories during the first quarter of 2012 to explore the impact of talent shortages on the global labour market and how employers are responding to the challenges raised by the lack of available talent in specific job categories. This is the seventh consecutive year that the survey has been conducted.

To read the full survey, click here

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