Mark Lennihan / AP
People wait to talk with potential employers at a job fair in New York last December. Despite the high jobless rate, some say it's hard to find good workers.
The slowly improving job market may be exacerbating a problem you may not know this country had: Finding good workers to fill open positions.
A new survey from human resources firm Right Management finds that 27 percent of human resources executives often have trouble finding the right person for key positions. That’s up from 23 percent a year ago.
That may come as a shock to the millions of people who are unemployed, but the lack of qualified candidates is something executives were even complaining about during the depths of the recession.
The Right Management survey of 631 human resources officials and senior executives found that another 61 percent of respondents occasionally have trouble finding the right candidate for the job, about the same as last year. Just 13 percent said they seldom if ever have that trouble, a decrease from last year. The survey was conducted late last year.
Right Management officials said the findings could be a sign that the job market is improving. The economy has been adding jobs, but employment growth has been painfully slow. The unemployment rate stood at 8.2 percent in March, with 12.7 million people actively looking for a job.
Experts say there is legitimate shortage of workers in some fields, such as highly specialized manufacturing jobs.
But some also say that employers grew spoiled during the recession, and either aren’t looking hard enough or aren’t willing to do things like pay moving expenses or provide some training for a new employee.
One problem is that workers who were laid off from a job in a declining industry may need to retrain for a job in a growing industry. That usually requires some money. The New York Times reported Monday that those jobseekers may face tougher times ahead, since federal funds to retrain the jobless are drying up.