Strategies for companies to tackle skill shortages

Addressing skill shortages:
strategies for companies

The issue of skill shortages is not a recent phenomenon; it has been looming over businesses for some time now. Defining the problem is straightforward: there are too few qualified individuals available for specific job roles. The real challenge lies in how companies should navigate this shortage of skilled personnel. Despite 55 percent of companies in the IT sector already acknowledging a shortage of IT specialists in 2015, the situation has worsened. In 2018, a staggering 82 percent of companies reported deficiencies in this area. This problem, however, is not confined to IT alone. The DIHK Labor Market Report 2019 revealed that nearly every other company struggles to fill job vacancies for extended periods. The vicious cycle of skill shortages is complex and driven by factors like demographic changes and inadequate investments in employee training. So, what options do companies have to address this pressing issue?

Investing in employee development

One viable solution is for companies to invest in the development of their existing workforce. The key concept here is securing and enhancing the skills of current employees. Instead of expensive recruitment drives in a fiercely competitive labor market, companies can turn to their own talent pool. By providing targeted training and development opportunities, employees can become more versatile and adaptable.

For instance, in manufacturing, employees can broaden their skill sets to operate various machines or work on different production lines. Similarly, healthcare professionals can expand their capabilities to operate a wide range of medical equipment through specialized training. These examples underscore the importance and potential of consistently nurturing employee growth.

This approach significantly boosts organizational flexibility, allowing companies to counteract skill shortages from within and align workforce deployment more effectively with demand. Germany's Manager Magazin echoes this sentiment, highlighting qualification as the pivotal factor in mitigating the skilled labor shortage. Forward-thinking companies are therefore allocating resources toward further training for their employees.

Utilizing workforce management for skill security

To strategically and sustainably develop employees, qualifications must be managed transparently within a single system. This ensures a clear overview and rapid identification of deficits in the qualifications matrix. At the individual employee level, it becomes easier to track who possesses which qualifications and how to empower employee A to enhance their versatility.

With a modern training management system, planned and completed training activities can be accessed transparently, reducing administrative burdens significantly. A comprehensive system offers the added advantage of automatically updating qualifications following successful training, making them readily available for shift planning. This not only supports the strategic aspect of skill security but also streamlines operational implementation in workforce scheduling.

Self-service for employee satisfaction

Employee loyalty is another crucial element in securing skilled workers. Satisfied employees are more likely to be productive and stay with the company. Modern self-service tools play a pivotal role in achieving this goal. In a 2018 survey, 73 percent of respondents expected their employers to provide self-service tools for HR-related tasks.

In this context, digital workforce management tools like the ATOSS Staff Center enable employees to effortlessly submit holiday requests and actively participate in time management processes. Features such as shift exchange platforms and preferential duty plans contribute to enhanced satisfaction and motivation in the workplace.

Intelligent workforce management solutions play a vital role in strategic personnel development and the subsequent retention of skilled staff. Regardless of the approach taken to combat skill shortages, one thing is certain: organizations that take proactive steps to secure skilled workers today will thrive in a competitive environment over the long term.