The Skills gaps in the years of the Great Resignation

AG5 skills gaps

The Great Resignation and the Great Reshuffle are two terms used for the trend of millions of workers quitting or changing jobs. If many people choose to quit their jobs and others go with (early) retirement, we expect to see effects on the skills gaps in many organizations worldwide. But did the percentage of skills gaps increase after the Great Resignation? Are other factors causing the growing skills gaps? We discuss the answers to these questions.

Effect of the Great Resignation on skills gaps

The phenomenon known as the Great Resignation—a term coined by Anthony Klotz, associate professor of organizational behavior at UCL school of management—has certainly had a significant impact on skills gaps. Yet, although the Great Resignation is mentioned as a global phenomenon, research by Anita Lettink, partner at leading consultancy firm SMC, and another study conducted by Aon, indicate the Great Resignation only took place in the United States. In the US, the Great Resignation has created an even more dynamic labor market that requires agility and adaptability from both employers and employees.

Resignation numbers are steadily increasing in the US 

These high resignation numbers didn’t come out of the blue, but they were merely accelerated by COVID-19, not necessarily caused by it. The skills gaps in the manufacturing industry, for example, are nothing new. For years, manufacturers have been struggling to find and keep good employees. Unfortunately, it’s gotten worse in recent months, as the Great Resignation has hit the manufacturing sector hard. As a result, job seekers have more demands, and companies must reinvent how they recruit workers and develop new ways to close the skills gaps. In addition, many more industries, such as construction, hospitality, health care, and tech, were already in trouble.

Why are there skills gaps globally? 

So if the Great Resignation isn’t further complicating the skills puzzle globally, why are the skills gaps growing worldwide? Interlocking economic, corporate, and individual decisions all influence the skills gaps.

The nature of work is rapidly changing, and many factors are driving this change. One of the most significant changes is the rise of artificial intelligence (AI). AI is already beginning to change how we work, and its impact will only become more pronounced in the years to come. For example, businesses can use AI to partially automate human workers’ current tasks. This means that businesses need employees with different skill sets. In addition, the gig economy is impacting the nature of work. An increasing number of people are freelancers or work part-time jobs. This flexibility can be good for workers and their work-life balance, but it also means less stability in the workforce. Finally, automation is also starting to affect the nature of work. This trend will likely continue as machines become more advanced and capable of doing more complex tasks. These changes will likely majorly impact the workforce in the coming years. Employers and employees alike will need to adapt.

How to solve the skills gaps

A National Center for the Middle Market report found that HR departments are too operational and not strategic enough. Businesses should rapidly address their talent and skills gaps, understand their abilities to reskill and upskill their employees, hire new talent, and create new roles that solve current challenges. Organizations need to have a solid plan in place to reskill and upskill employees as required. It’s also crucial for individuals to stay abreast of job market changes and be proactive about acquiring new skills. HR departments often get the skills gaps thrown on their plates without help, but that’s not a recipe for success. HR and L&D departments need the proper knowledge, tools, and resources to win this battle.

Here are 5 quick wins that help companies close skills gaps 

1. Analyze your skills gaps immediately! To take action, you need to know your starting point. So it starts with analyzing the skills gaps before you can move on to closing them. Check out some free Skills Matrix tools here.

2. Anticipate the future of skills. Once you know the gap, you can start filling it, but remember that the skills most in demand today may not be the same in six months or a year. Consider what will happen in the future, create those new job roles, and figure out who your high-potential and high-performing employees are to fill gaps.

3. Invest in training and development. Investing in training and development is another way to attract and retain top talent. Offering employees opportunities for growth and development is a way manufacturers can show that they are committed to their long-term success.

4. Create a positive work environment. Manufacturers and health care institutions must create a positive, inclusive work environment. This means providing employees with a safe and healthy workplace, fair treatment, and opportunities for career advancement. By creating a positive environment, organizations show that they value their employees and appreciate their efforts and accomplishments.

5. Offer competitive salaries and benefits. To attract and retain top talent, manufacturers, hospitality managers, and owners must offer competitive wages and benefits. This includes financial compensation, paid time off, health insurance, and retirement plans. A positive work environment does not eliminate the need for competitive compensation; both are requirements of employees in 2022 and beyond.

AG5 Skills Management Software 

With AG5 skills management software, you can analyze your skills gaps and make sure that you are always on top of emerging gaps in the future. Do you want an accurate overview of the training needs, compliance requirements, and automated matrices and reports to handle audits? Contact us today for more information on how to win the battle of skills and remain competitive. Schedule your live remote demo.



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