How Can Businesses Find Qualified Employees?

482034387Businesses large and small are always looking for the right workers to fill their open positions, but that can be a challenge in today’s economic landscape.

Although the overall unemployment rate is more than two percent lower than it was at the same time two years ago, more businesses report that they are having a hard time finding qualified workers. In fact, a recent Wall Street Journal article, Skills Shortage Means Many Jobs Go Unfilled, reports that in June 2014, approximately 33 percent of small business owners and CEOs that were surveyed had unfilled job openings because they couldn’t find applicants who were qualified for those positions. That number is up two percent from two years ago.

Whether a worker is looking for a job in manufacturing, service, IT, healthcare or any other trade, it’s important for them to find a position that matches their skills. On the other side, it’s important for businesses looking to hire new employees to find workers with the right skills and qualifications to fill their needs.

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In the last few years, there have been several news reports about the shortage of skilled workers in a variety of industries, from manufacturing to science and technology. Part of the issue is that many workers with years of skills and experience in a particular trade are now nearing the age of retirement, and companies face not only the loss of older workers, but the challenge of finding younger employees who also have the necessary qualifications.

In 2010, President Barack Obama launched the Skills for America’s Future initiative in an effort to ease the strain that comes with a lack of skilled workers in the American workforce. This initiative connects community colleges with companies looking to hire, and goes along with President Obama’s goal of increasing the number of community college graduates by 2020.

Skills for America’s Future promotes the idea that skilled workers are key to the United States staying relevant on the global economic stage. By working with community colleges in their local area, businesses can ensure that potential workers get the education and training they need to have the proper skills once they enter the workforce. These businesses are thus assured that they will have a future pool of skilled workers from which to choose.

What about workers who already have skills that are in high demand? These days, they more or less have their pick of the jobs, because companies recognize that skilled workers are few and far between. That means that such workers have more control over where they live, what they do, and how much they make.It also means that companies with less to offer may face that much more of a struggle to find the right workers for a particular position.

Staffing agencies may offer a solution for employers looking for workers with the right skill set. Today, staffing agencies help more than 11 million people find work each year, and the flexibility they afford both workers and hiring companies is appealing to both parties.

Staffing firms can identify the skills each worker has and find a job placement where those skills will be put to best use. Employers get the opportunity to try out a worker and ensure that he or she fits in well with the company culture and fills the role adequately, before making an offer for a permanent position. Workers have more choice about where, when, and how they work, and have the opportunity to see if they like a job before committing to a permanent role.

The good news is, there are more jobs available now than there were just a couple of years ago, which gives workers a lot more choice when it comes to finding the right position. It will probably always be a challenge for businesses to fill roles with people who have the proper skills, but there are plenty of resources out there for both workers and companies to find the right fit.

MORE: Is relocation the answer to the skills gap?

Jason Leverant

Jason Leverant
Jason Leverant is CEO of AtWork Group, a national staffing franchisor.

Jason Leverant
Jason Leverant is CEO of AtWork Group, a national staffing franchisor.

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3 Responses to “How Can Businesses Find Qualified Employees?”

  1. […] Read the source article at The Staffing Stream […]

  2. […] Businesses large and small are always looking for the right workers to fill their open positions, but that can be a challenge in today’s economic landscape.  […]

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