Finding skilled pros can be tough all over but especially in tech, according to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management.
It polled more than 2,000 members chosen at random from eight industries to ask about the lingering impact of the recession. While 52 percent reported difficulty filling specific positions, 71 percent of those recruiting in high tech said hiring was tough, along with 68 percent in manufacturing. They were the two sectors reporting the greatest difficulty.
The top five hardest-to-fill positions were:
- Highly skilled medical workers
- Highly skilled tech workers (technicians and programmers)
- Managers and executives
Those who reported difficulty also were asked to name the biggest skill gaps, though these seem to have little to do with the recession. Respondents could choose more than one answer, so the results don’t add up to 100 percent. Among the top deficiencies, they named:
- Written English (grammar and spelling) — 48 percent
- Mathematics (computation) — 38 percent
- Reading comprehension — (tie) 30 percent
- Spoken English — (tie) 30 percent
Among applied skills, the most-cited deficiencies were:
- Critical thinking/problem solving — 59 percent
- Professionalism/work ethic — 44 percent
- Written communications — 41 percent
- Leadership — 39 percent
- Collaboration/teamwork — 36 percent
Interestingly enough, companies recruiting on college campuses recently named “ability to work in a team structure” as the most-desired trait in a poll by the National Association of Colleges and Employers. While verbal communication and problem-solving also were ranked highly, writing skills didn’t appear to be a priority.