Sunday, December 10

More than 100,000 unfilled jobs despite the more than 3.1 million unemployed

A construction worker. / ARCHIVE

Companies send an SOS to the Government to warn of the serious problem of lack of labor in Spain, which already extends to many sectors and especially affects SMEs

Lucia Palacios

The great paradox of the Spanish market is that there are positions that remain unfilled, nothing more and nothing less than more than 109,000, at the same time that 3.1 million people are unemployed and looking for work. And no, it’s not just technological profiles, as one might think, but also traditional jobs in construction, the service sector, the countryside…

We are talking, yes, about experts in technology and data or health analysis (more in demand even as a result of the pandemic), but also about turners, millers, formworkers, carpenters, foremen, crane operators, assemblers, carriers, waiters… The lack of workers, which can no longer be covered even with foreign labor, is spreading more and more in many sectors and places in Spain, which is causing serious problems for Spanish companies, mainly small and medium-sized ones: 70% of these 109,000 vacancies are found in companies with fewer than 200 workers.

This is the SOS that Cepyme launched this Tuesday to the Government during the presentation of a report prepared together with Randstad: the serious problem of talent deficit that exists in Spain and that will be even greater in the future, according to what the president of Randstad, Jesus Echevarria.

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For this reason, the president of Cepyme, Gerardo Cuerva, asked the Executive “to take this issue seriously”, because – he warned – this is not a problem only for the company, but also for the country’s economic and social system. Thus, he charged against the Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, for having frivolized this matter when he said that if the companies do not find workers, what they have to do is raise their salaries, since – in his opinion – the “problem is much more serious, and it is not a single sector that is affected or a single segment: they are diverse and different sectors and economic thresholds ».

Cuerva blamed the low level of training as one of the main causes of this deficit of workers, since half of the more than 3.1 million unemployed do not have any training, not even secondary school, nor do they have qualifications related to technologies and communication. “We see a clear example of decoupling of training policy with the needs of the company,” said the CEOE vice president, who lamented that “we are late in training policies with the needs of the company.”

The limited geographic mobility, the aging of the ‘baby boom’ generation, the excessive bureaucracy that must be faced to find workers or the deficiencies in the catalog of occupations that are difficult to cover are other causes that the leader of Cepyme listed to achieve the professionals that companies demand. “We are too rooted in our environment, in our comfort zone,” said Cuerva, who warned that this deficit causes closures of companies that are doing well but cannot find that relief in key jobs, so that, “if faces this problem, a good part of the productive fabric will be lost, especially in depopulated areas, and the productivity of companies will drop».

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improve training

Along these same lines, the president of Randstad warned that the shortage of talent, which affects more than 56% of companies, is a “critical issue” for Spain, which will also have to compete with other countries to attract the best professionals . For this reason, he advocated improving training, since it is “the definitive door to employment.” Thus, he argued that the activity rate is close to 80% at university levels, but is below 40% among those with low qualifications, who suffer from an unemployment rate of 30%.

In addition, Echevarría opted for companies to make an effort to “be more attractive to attract talent”, with hooks such as facilitating family and personal reconciliation, allowing teleworking or offering training and retraining for the workforce.

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