North Carolina continues to suffer worker shortages as openings still outnumber available job openings. What can employers do about it?
Job Openings Still Outnumber Available Workers
The US labor market has been facing worker shortages for quite some time now. It was made worse by 2020 and the migration to the gig economy by many younger workers who normally would be entering the workforce. However, there seems to be a slight easing of this situation as the Federal Reserve continues to raise interest rates. Despite this, the job openings in the country still outnumber available workers, causing concern among policymakers.
410,000 Fewer Job openings went unfilled
Federal Reserve officials closely monitor the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report as they formulate monetary policy. In remarks on Capitol Hill this week, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell called the jobs market “extremely tight” and cautioned that recent data indicating resurgent inflation pressures could lead to interest rate hikes higher than expected.
In January, job openings declined, but there are still 10.824 million job openings, down 410,000 from December. Payroll processing firm ADP reported that companies added 244,000 workers in February, indicating that hiring has been resilient despite Fed rate hikes aimed at slowing economic growth and cooling the labor market.
The gig economy is one of the factors driving shortages
One reason why workers may not be returning to the labor market as expected is the strong gig economy. This economy empowers workers to choose when, where, and how they want to work and how often, making it an attractive option for a significant number of younger workers who traditionally work in the retail, restaurant, and fast-food industry.
Ride-share services, food delivery, and grocery pickup are just a few examples of the various gig economy jobs that workers can choose from. As a result, employers may have to adapt to workers’ scheduling freedom, which poses a massive challenge for many small, locally-owned brick-and-mortar businesses.
The Challenges Faced by Employers
Small, locally-owned businesses are the most affected by the current labor shortage. They cannot match the benefits that large corporations offer to their employees, such as health insurance, retirement benefits, and other perks. As a result, small businesses are at a disadvantage when it comes to attracting and retaining employees.
Furthermore, the gig economy has made it easier for workers to find higher-paying jobs with more flexible schedules. Employers who are unable to provide such benefits may lose out on hiring talented workers who seek work that is more suited to their lifestyle.
Another challenge for employers is the changing preferences of workers. The younger generation of workers, in particular, values freedom and flexibility over traditional job benefits. They want to work on their terms, which is why the gig economy has become so popular.
How are some Employers Adapting to filling Jobs?
To meet these challenges, employers must adapt to the changing needs of workers. One way to do this is by offering more flexible work arrangements, such as telecommuting or flexible scheduling. Additionally, employers can offer training programs and career development opportunities to their employees to help them grow and improve their skills.
Employers are facing challenges with traditional employment methods and the limitations of conventional job search websites. As a result, many are exploring alternative solutions such as partnering with employment agencies to bring in overseas workers to fill their job openings. One of those is Hot Jobs 360 a place where hard till jobs can be posted.
Employee Retention becomes important
Employers must prioritize employee satisfaction and retention in today’s competitive job market. By conducting an introspective look, encouraging positive interactions with customers, rewarding employees for referrals, and investing in training programs, employers can create a positive work environment that fosters employee loyalty and productivity.
The current labor shortage in the US is causing concern among policymakers, but it is not entirely unexpected. The strong gig economy, retirements, and changing preferences of workers have made it difficult for small, locally-owned businesses to attract and retain employees. However, with the right approach and willingness to adapt, employers can overcome these challenges and continue to succeed in the changing job market.
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