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Not Enough Job Orders, or Not Enough Candidates?

by | Jul 22, 2011 | Recruiter Training, Top Echelon Blog

Is the economy recovering?  Is it not?  Are we in a recession?  Are we not?
Does it matter?  The bottom line is that companies aren’t exactly setting the world on fire when it comes to hiring.

Now, there are many factors at work here, but there’s one factor in particular that may be getting overlooked, although it’s been receiving more publicity in recent weeks.  Before addressing that factor, let’s start with this fact:

There are currently at least three million open jobs in this country.

You might be asking how that can be, with as many unemployed people as there are.  If you’re a recruiter, though, and I’m willing to bet that most of you are, there’s a good chance you’re not surprised by that number.  That’s because you’ve probably accepted a job order from a client in the past year or two that proved to be just about impossible to fill.

The reason?  A mismatch of skills, in most cases.  Sure, some companies are looking for the “purple squirrel” or the “perfect candidate,” so to speak, and they’re willing to wait a ridiculous amount of time in order to find them (if they exist at all).  But some companies would hire right away… if only they could find a candidate with the skills for which they’re looking.

Recently, made this statement: “Three million job openings remain unfilled in the U.S. as companies claim workers simply don’t have the right skills.”  The news site also published a photo gallery of people who told their story about mismatched skills in the marketplace.  Among the vocations represented were the following (click here to view the gallery and read the stories):

  • Computer Consultant
  • Mortgage Broker
  • Journalist
  • Graphic Designer
  • Electronics Engineer

Sure, some jobs are gone and they’re never coming back.  However, there are plenty of open jobs right now in this country, and plenty of placement fees tied to those jobs for the recruiters who are able to fill them with the candidates that the companies want.

So, the problem isn’t a lack of job orders, per se… it’s a lack of qualified candidates who match the skills required by those job orders.  Companies aren’t setting the world on fire when it comes to hiring because they can’t find candidates who have the skills they need.

What’s been YOUR experience?  How difficult has it been to find candidates to fill your clients’ job orders?  Has it been a matter of the client wanting to find the “perfect candidate” or the fact that you can’t find a candidate with something even close to the right skill set?  Or have you run into both situations?

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