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Why Are Employers Struggling to Fill Vacancies?

If it seems like hiring has gotten more complicated of late, it might not be your imagination: A new survey from CareerBuilder indicates that employers are having a harder time finding qualified candidates for open jobs.

According to the survey, 37 per cent of employers say say they currently have open positions for which they cannot find qualified candidates, up from 25 per cent last year.

While a quarter (24 per cent) say vacancies typically go unfilled due to lack of qualified candidates for less than a month, 38 per cent of employers say they’ve had vacancies last 3 months or longer, and 11 per cent have had them stretch on for at least 6 months while they searched for qualified candidates.

Long-lasting vacancies can have very real consequences. More employers are experiencing these effects, with 58 per cent of employers saying they’ve seen a negative impact on their business due to extended job vacancies, up from 41 per cent last year. Some of the most commonly cited consequences include:

  • Productivity loss – 30 per cent
  • Lower morale – 24 per cent
  • Revenue loss – 15 per cent
  • Lower quality work – 15 per cent
  • Inability to grow business – 13 per cent
  • More employee turnover – 13 per cent

Part of the reason for these prolonged vacancies may be due to a growing skills gap – in other words, the skills candidates have do not necessarily match the skills employers actually need.

“Between the pressures from extended vacancies, measuring up to skilled candidates’ salary expectations and increases in spending on training, more employers are feeling the financial costs of the skills gap,” said Mark Bania, Director of CareerBuilder Canada. “New technologies, globalization and other factors are fundamentally changing businesses and the industries they operate in. There is a greater urgency for companies to reskill existing employees, offer comprehensive training for new recruits, and work with educators to prepare the next wave of workers for their evolving needs.”

Learn more about the survey here.


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