A Worker Shortage? When Millions Are Unemployed? [INFOGRAPHIC]

With over 12 million Americans included in the U.S. unemployment rate, a shortage of workers seems impossible.

However, the reality is that more employers are demanding highly skilled employees while job candidates are find themselves under-qualified for open positions.

I have been interested in the existence of the talent crunch because I needed to form my own opinion on the worker shortages in STEM fields a couple of months ago. The issue comes with a lot of controversy. But, the state of the economy cannot be ignored. We are living in an economy with unfilled jobs; yet, dooming unemployment rates have been set in stone for years.

The tech industry is the perfect example of this gap because the differences between employers and job candidates are apparent. Tech-based professions require very specific skills and abilities. For a number of reasons, these precise skills are not met by many job candidates applying for these open positions.

A recent infographic created by CareerBuilder lays out some important statistics regarding the gap between employers and job candidates. The infographic sets a foundation for outlining the misconceptions pushing down on talent in 2012.

From the research, here are some key findings to keep in mind when seeking answers to the controversy of a worker shortage in an economy with high unemployment:

  • Since 2008, 28 percent of candidates have been laid off
  • Nearly two-thirds of candidates knowingly apply for a position in which they do not obtain the required skills
  • The most common skills job applicants lack are mostly job-specific
  • Of the employers surveyed, 38 percent have positions open for which they cannot find qualified candidates

The main downfalls of employers and job candidates are as follows:

  • Employers only inform about 12 percent of candidates that they do not have the requisite skills for a job to which they applied.
  • Only 1 in 5 candidates are volunteering or going back to school to re-skill themselves while 51 percent believe they possess adequate skills to land a job

To fill these gaps it only makes sense to take advantage of the actions that both groups agreed to, according to the research on which the infographic is based. Job candidates are willing to learn and employers are willing to implement a training program aimed at re-training workers lacking specific skills.

What are you thoughts on the worker shortage in an economy of high unemployment? How do you think the talent gap can be closed?


For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at ComeRecommended!


About the Author: Brittany Troyer graduated from the Pennsylvania State University with a B.A. in public relations and an A.A. in business in May 2012. Prior to joining the team, Brittany has gained experience in communications through multiple internships and freelance experience, both in the area as well as Barcelona, Spain. Follow Brittany on Twitter!



This entry was posted in Job Search and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Pingback: A Worker Shortage? When Millions Are Unemployed? [INFOGRAPHIC] | The Savvy Intern by YouTern | Education and Chicago | Scoop.it()

  • Looking

    Employers with technical openings list very specific and specialized requirements that few people have unless they have done that job in that industry before,preferably in the last year. Job seekers apply anyways, hoping the employer will recognize they have the ability to learn it, and be wiling to train. They never hear back. So what will you train for, or was that even the problem? How do you know why you got no answer? Meanwhile, company keeps running ads, hoping for a miracle.

    • In some cases, the employer runs the ads because they are required to by law, even though they already have an internal candidate in mind. It happens. That accounts for some of what you refer to.

      As far as never hearing back… many employers get hundreds… or in the case of a company like Google, for example, thousands of applications for every opening. It would take an entire separate department to reply to each candidate and tell them why they weren’t hired. It’s just not feasible. In NO remote way am I defending employers in this regard… I completely and utterly agree that it would be fantastic to at the very least get a form letter… some sort of acknowledgement that I’m alive as an applicant. But I understand why I don’t.

      Miracle… I wouldn’t go that far. In the employers’ minds yes… they ideally would have the perfect candidate apply… someone who literally fits the position requirements 100% like a glove. They know that isn’t going to happen, however. So they’ll “settle” (for lack of a better term) for as close as they can get.

      That last part is very important to understand. Because here is where it is up to the candidate to have done their homework… to have tailored their resume to the position instead of just sending the same resume and cover letter to each position… to network instead of just blindly shot-gunning resumes to every position… to develop their skills in their free time while they’re searching for a job – there are SOOOO many resources out there for any kind of skill you want to develop. Many are self-paced and FREE! There really is ZERO excuse for not making oneself a more viable candidate.

      All of this will get you closer to to becoming that “close as they can get candidate”. And that is the candidate who gets hired.


      David Ellis
      Content and Community Manager

  • Need: Education Revolution focusing on teaching youth to self-lead and self-learn. I have always wondered at why every high-school doesn’t have detailed self-assessment and talent specific education as their primary focus. It would also be great to have mentoring in every educational experience that helps students learn what it means to handle their personal finances and how to look for and apply for work that best suits their gifts and personal motivations.

    (This is why I love my job by the way 🙂

    • You have my vote for Education Secretary, Bryan! 🙂


      David Ellis
      Content and Community Manager

  • Pingback: A Worker Shortage? When Millions Are Unemployed - YouTern | Ethics of Workforce Development | Scoop.it()