- More than 82% of employers said they're actively hiring, despite predictions of an economic downturn, according to a survey of 150 HR leaders by Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. Eighty percent of the respondents, however, reported having difficulty finding workers, with 70% identifying skills shortages as the reason.
- Forty-three percent of Challenger's respondents reported that, although they have enough applicants, those applicants do not have the needed skills. Another 43% said they do not receive enough applicants, with 27% noting that candidates who do apply are not qualified.
- "The labor market remains tight and employers are reporting skills shortages in almost every area, including in STEM, data analytics, human resources, finance, and operations. Job seekers have opportunities if they can make their cases to employers," Andrew Challenger, VP of global outplacement and executive and business coaching, said in a media release.
Demand for workers with tech skills continues to grow and the search for tech talent keeps getting tougher, according to research.
An Indeed study found that employers need tech skills in marketing, finance, sales and other departments. However, the skills shortage is more severe in the tech industry. According to a survey from Modis and General Assembly, 80% of decision-makers acknowledged a tech talent gap in their industry. Nonetheless, 67% of them said they intend to increase staffing in the coming year. The number of decision-makers who planned to raise headcounts decreased from 79% in 2018 — possibly an indication that confidence in hiring could be slipping in anticipation of a possible economic downturn or in response to skills shortages.
"Emerging technologies and automation are infiltrating nearly every industry. Employers need workers who are somewhat familiar with adapting to and working with new technology," said Challenger in the release. "The job openings exist. It is up to job seekers to be able to market themselves in a way that appeals to hiring authorities. That may mean clearly outlining skills and accomplishments, earning certifications tangential to your current position, or learning new skills entirely, whether that means taking classes in coding, business administration, or financial technology."
Applicants may or may not be able to learn new skills or certifications while hunting for jobs. Whether it's in industries that are more susceptible to automation, like manufacturing and grocery, or sectors with continuously evolving best practices, like tech, training new hires who are eager to learn the skills needed to fill jobs could be the first step to closing the skills gap that continues to challenge employers.