Employers Report Increasing Problems Finding Qualified Employees

September 7, 2006 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A newly released study from Robert Half International and CareerBuilder.com reveals employers are increasingly having a problem finding qualified job candidates.

According to a Robert Half press release, 55% of hiring managers surveyed for the Employment Dynamics and Growth Expectations Report (EDGE) said it was difficult to find qualified candidates a year ago, and 81% said it is equally or more challenging now. More than half (52%) of hiring managers said recruiting is difficult due to a shortage of qualified candidates.

The problem gives job seekers the upper hand, as 38% of hiring managers said they plan to increase starting salaries in the next year to attract new talent, according to the release. However, employees do not seem to realize this advantage. Four-in-ten workers surveyed categorized the job market as difficult 12 months ago and 85% said it is equally or more challenging today.

In addition, nearly one-in-five workers said they are less likely to ask for more money from a potential employer in the next 12 months. Workers are cautious about the job market. Thirty-six percent said they believe it will be even more challenging to find a job 12 months from now. In contrast to this belief, 21% of hiring managers reported their employee turnover rate is higher than it was 12 months ago and the same percentage expect it to be even higher 12 months from now.

Other survey findings included:

  • Employers are having the most difficult time recruiting staff-level employees. Thirty-seven percent of hiring managers said they are struggling to find these candidates while 15% reported difficulty filling director, manager and team leader positions.
  • Thirty-six percent of hiring managers stated they are most willing to increase compensation for staff-level positions. Eighteen percent of hiring managers said they are apt to increase compensation for director, manager and team-leader positions, while 13% will focus more on administrative and office support.
  • Thirty percent of hiring managers reported their firms have instituted new policies and programs to increase staff retention rates in the last 12 months, up from 23% in last year’s survey. The primary measures taken included offering pay raises, bonuses, better benefits and more flexible schedules.

For a copy of the full report, contact Jennifer Sullivan with CareerBuilder.com at (773) 527-1164 or Jennifer.Sullivan@careerbuilder.com ; or Christine Pardi with Robert Half International at (206) 749-9004 or christine.pardi@rhi.com .