Labor shortage may be here to stay according to experts
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Take a look around, and you may see the signs everywhere: “help wanted.” Companies are struggling to find enough workers to stay fully staffed, and experts say the labor shortage may be here to stay.
UT Tyler Research Analyst Dr. Manuel Reyes said there are typically more people unemployed than the number of jobs available, but in April of 2021, that pattern switched. “So now, there are almost two jobs available for every person employed.”
Reyes said this is due to the amount of workers retiring early and younger workers who are turning to other alternative incomes, like social media.
Another reason is that required skills have changed since the pandemic. The number of women in the work force also shrunk after COVID.
“They are not getting back into the labor force because they need to take care of children. Child care is very expensive these days,” said Reyes.
With the need for more workers overall, Tyler Express Employment Professionals witnessed the issue first hand. They said there is an increased number of companies reaching out for help.
Directing Recruiter Adam Morrow said, “Since we opened in 1995, we’ve helped over 3,500 businesses in East Texas. Last year, we helped nearly 700 businesses. When I started in 2011, we had a line out the door of people looking for work. And now, it’s a little bit, we have to work a little bit harder to connect with those job seekers.”
The company has also moved to a bigger facility, doubling their space just this month.
“As we continue to serve East Texas, we’re hearing there’s still a need for what we’re doing, even more than what we can provide, so we knew we had to do something,” Morrow said.
That need may continue, as experts say the labor shortage is not stopping any time soon, as baby boomers leave the work force.
“The replacement rate, which is those young people that are jumping into the labor force as they leave the labor force, is not fulfilling the needs,” said Reyes.
Morrow added, “Candidates are going to have a little bit more of a choice in where they work, and so companies are going to need to think about why would somebody want to work for me.”
In late 2020, more than 28.5 million baby boomers reported they were no longer part of the labor force because they retired.
Copyright 2023 KLTV. All rights reserved.