Employers Discuss the Top Three Drivers of the U.S. Talent Shortage – And How to Change Direction

Employers Discuss the Top Three Drivers of the U.S. Talent Shortage – And How to Change Direction

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Last year, ManpowerGroup released their 2018 Talent Shortage Survey discussing the Skills Revolution, and why employers should shift their focus from just in time hiring strategies to becoming the builders of talent for today and tomorrow.

In this survey, 61 percent of U.S. employers cited a lack of applicants, a lack of experience, and a lack of hard skills as the top three drivers for talent shortages within their respective organizations.

Fast forward almost a year later, and think about the Skills Revolution as it relates your organization.  Has any progress been made to decelerate these drivers, or is your talent crisis moving forward at full speed?  

Let’s examine each driver in more detail, and review what some of your peers are saying about taking charge and changing direction.

Driver #1: Lack of Applicants

Nearly one-third of employers say the main reason they can’t fill roles is a lack of applicants according to the survey.

A Korn Ferry Institute study from last year reiterates this sentiment – the biggest issue isn’t that robots are taking all the jobs, but rather that there aren’t enough humans to fill these positions. If this pattern continues, this talent shortage could equate to $8.5 trillion in unrealized annual revenues by 2030.

“Governments and organizations must make talent strategy a key priority and take steps now to educate, train, and upskill their existing workforces,” says Yannick Binvel, President of Korn Ferry’s Global Industrial Markets practice.

Driver #2: Lack of Experience

Approximately 21 percent of U.S. employers surveyed agree that candidates lack the necessary experience required within their organizations.

But, how is this possible when almost 22 million U.S. workers are considered “underemployed” – meaning they have a job that doesn’t put their experience, training, or education to work?

Scott Dobroski, an employer trends analyst at Glassdoor, says that while it’s a job-seeker’s market, data trends and employers have trouble finding “quality candidates who can tackle tomorrow’s business challenges in their respective kind of pool or lane.”

Driver #3: Lack of Hard Skills

14 percent of surveyed employers also note that applicants lack the hard skills they need.

But not all problems are caused by employers searching for candidates that can check every box, Dobroski adds. “We definitely think there is still a large disconnect between what academic universities have to offer to prepare students for the real world,” he comments.

In a 2018 HR Dive article, Jim Link, Chief Human Resources Officer at Randstad North America, stated that employers should “look beyond traditional training methods, like workshops, and think outside of the box to implement newer methods to deliver training on new skills or to strengthen existing skills.”

Changing Direction

ManpowerGroup Chairman & CEO Jonas Prising mentioned that “for organizations, creating a culture of learnability so people are equipped and open to adapt is not just an operational imperative but must be a strategic priority.”

Companies like Walmart, CVS, and Starbucks have used new training programs to upskill entry-level workers and broaden each organization’s skill base, while businesses such as Schaeffler Group are investing in apprenticeships as a solution.

While not always thought of in the U.S. as a natural option, registered apprenticeship programs can offer employers numerous benefits, such as more structured training, streamlined recruitment practices, increased loyalty and retention, and enhanced performance.

Organizations must shift gears and safeguard against these talent crisis drivers. Employers will need to think outside the box to train and retain the workforce of the future as reinforced by many industry thought leaders. Now is the time to change direction, and not let the talent shortage change the direction of your organization’s prosperity and profitability.

The Skills Revolution is upon us – are you ready to respond? Contact Franklin Apprenticeships to learn more about the power of high quality, registered apprenticeship programs as your organization’s response to the skills shortage.

Also, find out how employers in Maryland, Missouri, and Pennsylvania can respond by engaging in our programs targeting technology apprenticeships. Click on the following program links for more details: Franklin Digital and Missouri Digital.

Need Auto Tech employees? Find out about Missouri’s program for employers to tap into a seasoned talent pool of displaced workers with AutoMOtive!  Program subsidies available for qualified applicants.


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