Skills crises hits middle tier

Employers agree talent shortage hits critical level

The current skills shortage is affecting most people in the salary range of between $50,000 and $80,000, according to a national survey released today.

The Select Australasia employment trends survey, a poll of 1159 employers nationwide held between July and August this year, found 60 percent of organizations that responded are finding it hard to source talent.

Over three quarters of these potential employers rate the talent shortage as critical.

An estimated 38 percent of employers surveyed said retaining existing staff is the biggest challenge, and 32 percent said sourcing new talent was their biggest challenge.

Debbie Loveridge, chief executive officer of Select Australasia, said the Australian market is not doing enough to hold onto staff, who are moving over to the competition.

Loveridge said employers now need to protect their investment in people by creating a strong, valued employment proposition.

"The market is under pressure from both ends," Loveridge said.

"On the demand side employers are looking for more workers, while on the supply side the ageing population is shrinking the talent pool. To succeed in this environment, organizations need to seriously commit to creating a strong employment value proposition.

"The broad theme of the survey results is that you have to be strategic if you're going to attract and retain a loyal, skilled workforce. Fads come and go - organizations that will succeed long-term are those who commit to a range of employment strategies at all levels."

According to the report, the current skills and talent shortage is the top reason employers are finding it difficult to source talent.

The next reason, according to Select, was strong competition for candidates followed closely by the economic environment, lack of employment diversity in the workplace, an ineffective in-house human resources or recruitment division, advertising strategy or poor company reputation.

More than half of the respondents to the survey (59 percent) believe employees leave to go to a competitor.

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