62% of Businesses: “Difficult” To Fill Positions

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Express Employment Professionals today released new survey results revealing the difficulty employers have filling jobs. The survey also shows the reasons open jobs aren’t filled and which jobs are hardest to fill.

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Businesses have very specific needs, but there just aren’t enough workers with the right skills or experience to go around.

Express Employment Professionals today released new survey results revealing the difficulty employers have filling jobs. The survey also shows the reasons open jobs aren’t filled and which jobs are hardest to fill.

In a poll of businesses, 62 percent said it was “very difficult” or “somewhat difficult” to recruit and fill open positions. When the same question was asked in the first quarter of 2015, 60 percent said “very difficult” or “somewhat difficult.” Notably, the percentage saying “very difficult” increased from 14 to 20 percent.

Businesses were also asked, “What is the primary reason that your open jobs are not filled?” “Lack of available applicants” was the No. 1 answer at 36 percent, while 25 percent blamed “lack of experience” and 20 percent said “lack of hard skills.” Another 13 percent cite “lack of soft skills,” meaning over half of businesses find it difficult to hire because applicants lack the right experience or skills.

According to Express Employment Professionals franchisees, the top five hardest positions to fill include computer numeric controlled (CNC) machinist, general laborer, welder, commercial drivers license (CDL) driver and accountant.

“Businesses have been telling us for quite some time that positions are hard to fill, and as the labor market tightens that’s only going to continue,” said Bob Funk, CEO of Express, and a former chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

“As the survey shows, we also have to recognize that the skills gap remains part of the problem. Businesses have very specific needs, but there just aren’t enough workers with the right skills or experience to go around. This says to me that matching unemployed workers with open jobs will require more job training opportunities. This isn’t just a concern for certain businesses; this is a concern for all Americans who want to see a stronger, growing economy.”

The survey of 373 businesses was conducted in July 2015; the respondents are current and former clients of Express Employment Professionals. The survey of 134 Express Employment Professionals franchisees was conducted during the same time period.

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If you would like to arrange for an interview with Bob Funk to discuss this topic, please contact Sherry Kast at (405) 717-5966.

About Robert A. Funk
Robert A. “Bob” Funk is chairman and chief executive officer of Express Employment Professionals. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the international staffing company has franchises in the U.S., Canada and South Africa. Under his leadership, Express has put more than five million people to work worldwide. Funk served as the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and was also the Chairman of the Conference of Chairmen of the Federal Reserve.

About Express Employment Professionals
Express Employment Professionals puts people to work. It generated $2.85 billion in sales and employed more than 456,000 people in 2014. Express ranks as the largest franchised staffing company and second largest privately held staffing company in the United States. Its long-term goal is to put a million people to work annually.

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Sherry Kast
@ExpressPros
since: 08/2008
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