9 job openings employers can't fill

For the second year in a row, skilled trade workers are the most in demand, a new study finds.

Research from recruitment firm ManpowerGroup revealed that employers are having the hardest time filling skilled trade positions. This is the fifth time in the last six years that skilled trade positions have topped the list; the lone exception was in 2011, when it ranked third.

Here are the nine other hardest jobs to fill in the United States, according to the study:

  • Sales representatives
  • Drivers
  • IT staff
  • Accounting and finance staff
  • Engineers
  • Technicians
  • Management/executives
  • Mechanics
  • Teachers

"Year after year, we see little difference in the roles employers have trouble filling," said Jonas Prising, president of ManpowerGroup. "As talent shortages in key areas persist, we need to focus on training programs that create opportunity for employers to fill their talent gaps, and for job seekers to obtain an in-demand skill and achieve employment security."

The study found that among the employers having trouble filling open positions, nearly half attribute it to candidates lacking technical competencies and hard skills. Other factors include candidates not having the necessary workplace competencies and soft skills and there just being on overall lack of available qualified applicants.

Despite the difficulty employers have had in filling these positions, it’s getting easier for them to find qualified employees. Overall, 39 percent of U.S. employers report having difficulty finding staff with the right skills, down from 49 percent in 2012.

Expanding training and development for existing staff, doing more recruiting from untapped talent pools and appointing people who lack the skills today but have the potential to learn and grow into a job are among the most popular strategies employers are using to try and improve their chances of finding the right employee.

"The improvement in the U.S. talent shortage is encouraging because it tells us companies will not allow talent mismatches to hamper business growth," said Prising. "Rather, employers are becoming more willing to invest in existing talent to help them advance, and also broadening their approach to sourcing new talent, both of which are starting to ease the strain of the talent shortage."

The study was based on surveys of more than 1,000 U.S. employees.


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