The Results Are In: The Biggest Barrier to Employment for Job Seekers Currently

With record low unemployment, yet millions of job openings across North America, it can be difficult for hiring managers to find the right candidates for the job. From rising inflation to remote opportunities to unrealistic job expectations, the barriers to employment for job seekers run the gamut.

In August, we asked our readers to name the biggest barrier to employment for job seekers right now. The results may surprise you.

With 25.9%, the top answer to the monthly poll was “Compensation too low,” followed by “Lack of necessary skills for available jobs,” with 17.2%. With another 12.9% of the votes, readers said the “Rising cost of living,” while 8.4% of respondents cited “Lack of flexible work hours” as a top barrier to employment for job seekers.

The rest of the results are as follows:

  • “Arranging dependent care (childcare, eldercare, etc.)” (5.2%)
  • “Lack of Transportation” (4.5%)
  • “Lack of soft skills” (2.6%)
  • “Lack of job opportunities” (1.9%)
  • “Lack of benefits” (1.9%)

Another 19.4% of respondents chose the “other” option. Here are a few of their responses:

  • “Job postings requiring years of experience for little pay. As well as lack of entry-level positions for college graduates requiring zero experience.”
  • “Poor advertising of open jobs. The job descriptions are sometime so sweeping and complex that people feel scared that they won’t qualify anyway, so they’re too scared to even apply.”
  • “Competition between Hiring Managers. Applicants don’t show up for interviews because they have many offers on the table.”
  • “Lack of skills and length of employment from previous employers.”
  • “Companies’ vaccination policies.”
  • “Not giving the applicant the chance to prove ability to do the job.”
  • “Not being allowed to work remotely.”
  • “Fear of recession related layoff/termination.”
  • “Housing costs – applicants cannot accept positions if there is no affordable housing in the area.”

For more information on the current employment situation, check out these articles from Refresh Leadership!

How do you overcome employment barriers? As a leader, what are you doing to reach the right candidates? Let us know in the comments section below!

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