How to Navigate the Talent Shortage in Europe

Published on May 26, 2023

Updated on Aug 25, 2023

Written by Mariana Marques

From low fertility rates to an ageing population - all roads lead to a talent shortage in Europe. As a talent leader, navigating this unprecedentedly tight labour market is far from a walk in the park. So how can you rethink your talent strategy and ensure that you hire the right talent for your business, all while retaining your current employees?

In this article, we will go over some strategies you can consider to ace your talent strategy despite the uncertain times we are facing. These are:

  • Broadening your talent pool

  • Reskilling and upskilling

  • Investing in your company culture 

How you can broaden your talent pool 

All employers are fishing in the same pond and that’s great, but what if you could fish in a lake? Imagine the extended opportunities you would have to not only catch more, but bigger fish too. There are a lot of untapped workers who are ready to get back to business but face barriers due to a lack of conditions or employers’ failure to accommodate their specific needs. 

People with disabilities, caretakers, and parents who don’t have access to childcare, are examples of workers you could target. At the European Union level, only 50.6% of people with disabilities are employed, compared to 74.8% of persons without disabilities. While it is disheartening to hear, these people are far less likely to be employed than people without disabilities. 

So how can you attract “missing workers”, you might be asking? One of the most important ways is to put more emphasis on ensuring your job postings are more appealing, competitive, and clear in showing the benefits that your organisation is offering. 

For a lot of people, creating a job posting is just a tick on an extensive to-do list. While we can’t blame them - we can certainly advise you not to underestimate the importance of writing an attention-grabbing, optimised job advert that shows you are open to taking candidates from all backgrounds and accommodating their working preferences. 

Perhaps a job position could be part-time, instead of full-time, to reach candidates who want to take on work but have other commitments. Or perhaps it could be an internship aimed specifically at graduates. The options are endless, and it’s worth considering them to attract hidden talent that has outstanding potential. 

Reskilling and upskilling

Sometimes what you were looking for is right there in front of you. Look within your company and understand the skills you have available to you. Identify the transferable skills of your current employees to understand how they may be able to accomplish the same tasks you are advertising in a job posting. Invest heavily in reskilling and upskilling your employees through training, so you can avoid hiring the talent you don’t necessarily need.  

Mentoring opportunities are also a great way to upskill your employers using the resources you already have: your more experienced workforce. This also means you are investing in a culture of collaboration and teamwork, where employers learn from each other. 

With 2023 being the official Year of Skills, it’s never been clearer that skills are crucial to driving businesses to succeed. But understanding the right skills to train your employers on, or advertise for, is a whole different ball game. Lightcast offers an array of solutions that can help you understand the skills gaps within your company, as well as skill demands across Europe. Our Open Skills Library has over 30.000 categorised skills across all sectors. We’ve also created a free European Insights tool that will give you a glimpse of how our data can be used to understand employer hiring demand and skills trends of occupations in specific European countries. 

Navigating the Talent Shortage: 9 Takeaways for Higher Education

Read the Full Article

Investing in your company culture 

It’s crucial to have a culture of openness and understanding within your organisation. Having common goals and a higher mission that brings employees together are only the first steps of many. That, in itself, won’t be enough for you to retain your talent. What does help to retain talent is accommodating employees needs and working preferences. 

30% of European workers worked at least partially remotely last year. In some countries, the percentage is even higher. Take the Netherlands, for instance, with close to 65% of jobs being fully remote/mobile. And this is just the beginning, as increasingly more job postings advertise for remote/mobile and hybrid positions. Reviewing employee benefits and moulding these to what the top talent is seeking is another crucial step. Our recently launched Global Talent Playbook may help with a lot of the questions about employee and skills trends, so do give it a read.  

The European labour market is difficult, and all of the external events we are now seeing play out only add to its complexity. Continent and country-specific labour market data will help you understand the talent shortages in your region and how your company can navigate these.

Ready to Solve Problems Together?