- The American Staffing Association has released its skills index for the second quarter of 2017, a detailed list of the top 170 hardest to fill jobs. The top jobs include audiologists (new to the list), computer and information research scientists, sales engineers, heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers, and repair shop or parts store salespeople.
- The index was developed in partnership with CareerBuilder and is based on a hiring indicator that measures the demand, supply and number of individuals working in specific occupations. Each occupation is then compared on a scale of 1-100.
- New jobs on the list this time (in addition to audiologists) are podiatrists, as well as electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers. This reflects the increasing difficulty in sourcing STEM candidates.
The ASA Skills Gap Index has long been considered a benchmark of where things stand in terms of recruitment and staffing. It draws from 90+ sources of data in addition to the CareerBuilder hiring index. The jobs that are consistently showing up mostly fall under STEM jobs, but there are other remarkable talent shortages in less-reported sectors, including retail and logistics careers. These jobs often struggle to find takers due to lower pay or poor perceptions of what the jobs entail.
These are not impossible jobs to fill, but rather take longer to find qualified candidates as compared to other jobs. Recruiters who understand how to find talent for STEM jobs know that it takes a great deal of effort connecting with a wide variety of networks and associations. Diversity and inclusion initiatives go a long way in helping recruiters expand the net, so to speak. Generally, they open up opportunities for broader talent sources, which is good for the business generally.
However, it's unlikely this difficulty will change anytime soon without some level of intervention by employers. Some are turning to apprenticeship programs or coding bootcamps to try and find the right talent — programs the current presidential administration fully supports. Others are turning to less formal but still key learning programs to educate fast learners already present at the company to make up for talent shortages.