Thanks to the election, issues like employment and immigration have been very popular topics. Companies of all sizes have questions about how potential new policies in the coming years will affect their ability to hire the talent they need.
As of now, it's common for employers in many sectors to rely on international talent to make up for domestic shortages in roles that are considered hard to fill. Both engineering and skilled industrial positions are great examples of these types of roles.
Recent data shows that foreign-born workers account for a significant percentage of the STEM field. Specifically, 20% of STEM employees with bachelor's degrees are from another country. That figure more than doubles to 59% when looking at employees with PhDs. Other research has shown that not only has immigration over the last several decades been a win for the US economy as a whole, but it has not impacted the employment levels or wages of American-born works in any substantial way.
Due to all the issues that have been raised in these areas, a lot of effort has gone into identifying trends related to the recruitment of engineers and skilled industrial positions. The first trend that will shape this landscape in the coming year is the fact that the market currently swings heavily in the favor of job seekers. As of now, 71% of opportunity jobs, which are defined as jobs with high and rising pay, face a talent shortage.
Another trend is where candidates interested in US opportunity jobs like engineering and skilled industrial positions are coming from. Data shows that individuals from the Netherlands are most likely to pursue these jobs, followed by French and German candidates. Other countries that make this list include Australia, UK and Ireland. This data shows that if an employer is having trouble filling a role, they need to ensure that they're thinking about recruiting on a global scale.
For those involved in the recruitment of skilled industrial workers, one trend that will present challenges is the reality that education and training systems haven't evolved alongside industry needs. This situation has created a skills gap that eight out of ten manufacturing executives say directly affects their ability to keep up with production demand from customers.
Even when companies have tried offering higher wages, they've still found it challenging to recruit the right type of talent for their skilled industrial positions. That why many companies are turning their attention towards the next generation of workers through efforts like apprenticeships, field trips to factories and partnerships with schools that highlight manufacturing's innovative nature and career possibilities.
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