News - 杰艾智库丨失踪的劳动力


The Missing Workforce
Ningbo, 18/06/2024

近期,世界就业联合会(WEC)公布了其最新的战略研究项目The Work We Want”的成果。该项目是WEC携手FT Longitude,以及招聘和雇佣行业的主要商业领袖合作进行的,而我们杰艾控股就是项目组的重要成员之一。该项目成果分为三个篇章,以下是第二篇章的第一篇推文,杰艾控股持续翻译转载,与大家一起分享探讨。

The Missing Workforce


The workplace is being transformed by new technologies – but economies around the world also face intense demographic pressures and changing expectations about work, which are resulting in talent shortages. How can we fill the gap of the missing workforce?



The world of work is passing through an era of dramatic change. Technology – in particular AI – is disrupting the ways in which organisations operate.



But technology is not the only driver of change regarding the employee-employer relationship. Endemic unpredictability and weak economic growth across the globe are destabilising for business, creating negative conditions for hiring new recruits and or even keeping existing talent. As well as significant changes to the conditions of work, the profile of the workforce is undergoing a seismic shift. This is because many regions face a very human challenge: a shortage of available talent in the labour market.


These shortages are affecting major economies around the world:


  • Analysis by theS. Chamber of Commerce finds that, if every unemployed person in the U.S. found a job today, there would still be 3 million open vacancies.
  • 美国商会分析发现,如果今天美国每个失业者都能找到工作,那么仍有300万个职位空缺。


  • Japan is expected to be short of 11 million workers by 2040.
  • 预计到2040年,日本将缺少1100万工人。


  • China faces an annual labour force gap of around 11.8 million, according to analysis by the World Economic Forum.
  • 根据世界经济论坛的分析,中国每年面临约1180万的劳动力缺口。


  • In Europe, “persistent labour shortages are found in a diverse range of sectors and occupations across all skill levels,” according to a recent report – and “shortages in both high- and low-skilled occupations are projected to increase considerably”.
  • 根据最新报告,在欧洲,“所有技能水平的不同部门和职业都存在持续的劳动力短缺现象”,而且“高技能和低技能职业的劳动力短缺预计将大幅增加”。


  • Consultancy Korn Ferry has warned of a global talent shortage of 85.2 million people by 2030. Of 20 leading economies analysed, India is the only one that can expect a talent surplus by 2030.
  • 咨询公司光辉国际警告称,到2030年,全球人才短缺将达到8520万人。在分析的20个主要经济体中,印度是唯一一个有望在2030年实现人才过剩的国家。


  • The financial impact could amount to $8.452 trillion in unrealised revenue, equivalent to the combined GDP of Germany and Japan. In business and financial services alone, in the US, the lost opportunity could be equivalent to 1.5% of the projected 2030 economy.
  • 对财务影响是,未实现收入可能达到8.452万亿美元,相当于德国日本的GDP总和。仅在美国商业和金融服务领域,失去的机会就预计相当于2030年经济的1.5%。

Some of the reasons for this issue are demographic; the result of a retirement wave sweeping through ageing societies, for example. Increased labour mobility creates opportunities for some regions and industries, and complications for others.



The effects of these trends have been compounded by major shifts relating to people’s attitude towards work. Since 2020 and the Covid crisis, many people have re-evaluated the role of work in their live. They have sought increased autonomy and control in their professional activities: the Great Resignation or Great Attrition have illustrated workers’ willingness to work differently, rejecting traditional deals from their employers.

人们对工作态度的大转变也加剧了这些趋势的影响。自2020年和新冠肺炎危机以来,许多人重新评估了工作在生活中的作用。他们在工作中寻求更多的自主权和控制权:大辞职或大损耗(也被称作大离职(Big Quit)或者大改组(Great Reshuffle),具体是指从2021年年初开始,面对不断上涨的生活成本、停滞不前的薪酬收入、持续流行的新冠疫情以及长期累积的工作不满,大批美国上班族自愿集体请辞的群体社会行为)表明了员工想要以不同的方式工作,拒绝雇主的传统雇佣模式。


“The pandemic highlighted workers’ desire for non-traditional forms of work, whether it’s flexible work, work from home, working remotely while you’re travelling the globe – all those things that became normal,” says Barry Asin, chief analyst at global staffing and workforce solutions research and advisory firm Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA). “Meanwhile, companies continue to struggle to get the labour they need. Typically, CEOs are now reporting that getting the right talent is one of their top three challenges.”

“疫情凸显了员工对非传统工作形式的渴望,无论是弹性办公、居家办公还是在环球远程办公,所有这些都变得正常了。”全球知名人力资源和职场解决方案研究咨询机构SIA的首席分析师Barry Asin表示,“与此同时,公司仍在为获得所需的劳动力而努力。典型的情况就是,首席执行官们正在汇报说,获得合适的人才是他们面临的三大挑战之一。”

Agility is now non-negotiable


One way that employers can help redress the imbalance between labour market demand and supply is to invest effort in actively expanding the available pools of talent.



Our global survey of 715 senior executives reveals that the most common strategy for doing this is targeting and supporting talent from underemployed sectors of the workforce: such as long term unemployed, disabled persons, individuals with criminal records, and people from ethnic minorities.


Integrating people with disabilities and health issues (Switzerland)

After a long period of unemployment, Beat D. (61) was yearning to get the position of salesman in spare parts management at an industrial company that he applied for. "The HR manager wanted to hire me, but the company deemed the risk too uncertain due to my Parkinson's disease." Eager to integrate qualified professionals regardless of their disabilities, the HR manager reached out to Stiftung Profil, an organisation which supports people with disabilities or health issues in integrating into the general job market and advises companies on inclusion.
经过长时间的失业,Beat D.(61岁)渴望在他申请的一家工业公司获得备件管理的销售员职位。“人力资源经理想雇佣我,但由于我患有帕金森氏症,所以公司认为风险太不确定。”这位人力资源经理渴望融入合格的专业人士,无论他们是否残疾,于是他联系了Stiftung Profil,一家为残疾或健康问题人士融入一般就业市场并为公司提供包容建议的组织。

Thanks to Stiftung Profil, Beat could benefit from a job coach, helping him and the company to settle into his role. He has increased his working hours from initially 50% to 80%, aiming for 100%, and he wants to continue working for several more years, even beyond retirement age! "I sometimes walk unevenly down the hallway, but otherwise, I have no limitations. My work is mental, and that works fine."
多亏了Stiftung Profil,这让Beat从工作辅导中受益,并帮助他和公司适应他的角色。他已经将工作时间从最初的50%增加到80%,目标是100%,他想再多工作几年,甚至超过退休年龄!“我有时在走廊上走得不自然,但除此之外,什么都没有限制住我。我是脑力劳动者,并做得很好。”

His advisor at Stiftung Profil continues to be a crucial point of contact. "I hope that such institutions become better known in companies' HR departments. This would give more people with disabilities the opportunity to be employed." After two years, between 60 and 70 percent of the individuals placed by Stiftung Profil are still in the same job.
他在Stiftung Profil的顾问是一个关键的联系点。“我希望这样的机构更能被企业的人力资源部门知晓。这将给更多残障人士就业的机会。”两年后,Stiftung Profil所安置的60%至70%的人仍做着同一份工作。

Organisations like Stiftung Profil not only serves the recruitment needs of companies, enabling them to look into untapped talent pools. They also help manage some of the risks such as increased sickness benefits premiums which deter companies from hiring people with disabilities. When employment goes through a staffing company, the employees are insured for sickness benefits through the collective labour agreement for the agency work sector.
像Stiftung Profil这样的组织不仅满足了公司的招聘需求,使他们能够挖掘尚未开发的人才库,还协助企业的风险管理,如疾病福利费的增加等,这些阻碍了公司雇佣残障人士的因素。当员工通过人力外包公司就业时,可以由外包公司的集体劳动协议获得疾病福利保险。

Moving past dead ends to open roads (USA)

Staffing gave Lisa Goodrich the second chance she needed in her career. As a formerly justice-involved individual, Goodrich was concerned she could never get a chance to move past a dead-end job that didn’t support her financially and kept her away from her husband for long periods. Then she found Working Fields. The staffing agency not only placed her with a local cable manufacturing company but also provided her with a peer coach who met with her weekly to develop her budgeting skills and support her recovery from substance use. Soon, she had the resources to purchase a vehicle and get the necessary medical treatment she’d been postponing. Based on her hard work and dedication, Goodrich earned a full-time position with the manufacturing company where she worked.
人力外包给了Lisa Goodrich职业生涯所需的第二次机会。作为一个以前触犯过法律的个人,她在很长一段时间里都担心自己也许永远都得不到一份可以安稳牢靠做到退休的工作了,这让她没有经济支持,也无法摆脱丈夫。但是她找到了Working Fields。这家人力外包机构不仅为她安排了当地一家电缆制造公司,还为她提供了一位每周与她会面的同事教练,以培养她的预算技能,并帮助她从药物滥用中康复。很快,她就能购买一辆车,并得到她一直推迟的必要医疗。基于她的辛勤工作和奉献精神,Goodrich在她工作的制造公司获得了一个全职职位。

Another strategy is to make recruitment practices more efficient, whether by making the application process more accessible (identified by 47% of companies), using new recruitment platforms to access untapped talent (33%) or reducing formal education requirements when hiring.


Finding real-world talent in the virtual world (The Netherlands)

Many institutions predict that labour market shortages and mismatches of available workers will only increase in the coming years. One recommended solution is to promote learning behaviours within the workforce; however, it often faces challenges associated with low engagement. Fortunately, employers can overcome these challenges by making the invisible visible. Globally, approximately 2.8 billion people engage in daily gaming. Interestingly, research from Randstad indicates that gaming contributes to the development of essential skills for real-world occupations. Recognising the gamer audience as a talent source enables employers to fulfil staffing needs based on individuals’ hobbies while providing benefits for employer branding. The Randstad "career mode" video on this can be found on YouTube.

Half of organisations want to source workers from under-employed groups to expand their pool of talent within the next two years


The third-ranked strategy is to offer specialist support to refugees and asylum seekers, many of whom are frozen out of the labour market when they arrive in a new country, disadvantaged by employment gaps in their CVs, language barriers or a lack of experience in the new market. Even when settled status is achieved – which can take years – these workers often find it hard to re-enter work.



“Worldwide, countries can do more to give asylum and refugee workers a formal role in the economy,” says Luc Triangle, general secretary at the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). “They could be integrated much better into society through a formal employment in the labour market.”

“在全球范围内,各国都可以想更多办法,让庇护和难民工人在经济中发挥正式作用。”国际工会联合会(ITUC)秘书长Luc Triangle表示,“通过在劳动力市场的正式就业,他们可以更好地融入社会。”


Our survey respondents agree: 80% say that governments must reduce legal barriers to hiring refugees or asylum seekers. As organisations are recognising, these groups can be a valuable source of talent.



While the integration of asylum seekers and refugees is essential in the current geopolitical context, facilitating well-managed work mobility is equally important to meet economic and workers’ needs. Indeed, survey respondents clearly recognise the importance of labour mobility. In the context of the labour market gaps they face, migration can play an important role in increasing the talent pools available to employers. Eighty-one percent of respondents say that increased labour migration has allowed their organisation to access talent with different and/or higher levels of skills, while 78% say that if they did not hire workers from abroad, they would not be able to fill vital skills gaps at their organisations.


Building more inclusive workplaces


To attract and retain under-employed worker groups and workers from other countries, businesses will need to offer more flexible working arrangements and varied opportunities. For example, flexible or reduced working hours are often sought by senior specialists who no longer wish to work full-time. But beyond increasing availability of those arrangements, businesses also need to build more inclusive cultures that allow everyone to feel comfortable and thrive as a consequence.



We found that most executives regard their organisation as being committed to inclusion.


Most organisations are committed to challenging discrimination, wherever it occurs


It is certainly positive to see that the vast majority are committed to challenging discrimination and have put in place clear processes to report problems, although there is further progress to be made. Six percent disagree that their organisation is committed to challenging discrimination, and 5% disagree that their organisation has a strategy that specifically supports diversity, equity and inclusion in its workforce.


The skills to succeed


As well as building a supportive environment, equipping every worker with the skills they need to succeed is crucial to attracting and retaining talent.



That includes reskilling people who may have become disillusioned with their first career to help them re-enter the workforce, as well as helping older workers to become more comfortable with new technologies. Senior executives are aware of the pressure that constant tech evolution adds to their training programs: 78% worry they will not be able to train employees sufficiently to keep up with technology developments in the next three years.



Nevertheless, the companies that face this challenge head-on and invest in their upskilling strategies now will reap the benefits in building a reliable and dynamic talent pool.


The need for a more flexible workplace


As we explored in Chapter 1, the vast majority of executives – 92% – recognise that they will have to create a more flexible workforce that can adapt to rapid shifts in the level and nature of work within the next two years.



While flexibility is a strategic imperative for businesses, it is also in demand among workers. Eighty-three percent of senior executives say that, following the pandemic, employees place as much value on having flexibility around where and when they work, as they do on other factors such as compensation.



Attitudes to working conditions, the workplace, and how workers engage with their employers have all changed. Understanding this generational shift in expectations is crucial for employers to successfully attract and retain skilled personnel. It is the key to reaching untapped parts of the talent pool and building a more diverse, inclusive workplace.


Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., president and CEO at SHRM has noted leaders’ perspectives changing. “Historically, employers wanted dedicated employees on their payroll for a significant period of time. Now, CEOs are increasingly comfortable with a bigger percentage of their workforce being on flexible contracts. It’s good for the employees, who want that flexibility and who don’t need the stability of a permanent role, and good for the companies, because it allows them to ramp up and down quickly.”

“领导者的观点正在发生变化。”SHRM总裁兼首席执行官Johnny C.Taylor Jr. 指出,“从历史上看,雇主在很长一段时期内都希望他们的工资是发给专属员工的。而现在,首席执行官们越来越适应更大比例员工签订灵活合同。这对员工有好处,有些人就想要这种灵活性,不需要长期职位的稳定性;这对公司也有好处,因为可以让他们快速增减人员。”


Flexible employment can also open the door to permanent employment, if that suits both parties, adds Taylor. “Companies are saying, ‘I’ll put you on a contract at the end of it, or I can let you go, or I can extend it – and you can decide if you’re going to remain with me.’”



Not all roads lead to permanent roles, and nor should they – but a truly flexible approach represents a win-win for both sides of the employment relationship.


Offering opportunity through agency contracts


Extending the use of agency work contracts is also providing better options for under-employed groups.



“There’s an opportunity to use contingent talent or independent workers to make your workforce more diverse,” confirms Dr Anna Gurun, associate director at UK research institute HSM Advisory. “It’s often about women who’ve had children who don’t want to return to full-time work in the same way, but have the experience that organisations need,” she explains. “They could be brought in on a contract to do a certain number of hours across the year, but they have flexibility in deciding how to do that – maybe more during term time and not as much during the holidays.”

“雇佣临时工或独立员工,有机会使您的员工队伍更加多样化。”英国研究机构HSM Advisory的副主任Anna Gurun博士证实,“这通常是关于那些有孩子的女性,她们不想以同样的方式重返全职工作,但拥有组织所需的工作经验。”她解释道,“她们可以签订在一年中工作一定时间的合同,但她们能够灵活决定如何做到这一点——相比较与学校放假期间,可能在孩子学期时间做得更多。”


Encouragingly, a majority of the executives we surveyed are already working to diversify their agency worker talent pools. A significant proportion of those working on these initiatives have implemented them by partnering with an HR services provider.


HR services providers are a key part of organisations’ strategies to diversify their agency worker talent pools


Demand for flexible work is also growing among older age groups. “I see a lot of older people who have specific skills and want to work as a freelancer or contractor”, says Gurun. They may have been full-time employees in the past, but want a new approach that does not require the commitment of a full-time role, while still allowing them to continue contributing and earning as they approach retirement. “That works for business because it gives them ongoing access to the experience and knowledge of those individuals”, says Gurun.



Engaging older individuals as agency workers also helps businesses provide advancement options for younger workers. “It allows businesses to improve their age diversity without blocking the pipeline”, explains Gurun. “It frees up some space for workers coming up the organisation, while maintaining access to those more experienced workers.”


Agility is now non-negotiable


As employers around the world wrestle with major labour and skills shortages, it is becoming critical that they will pull every lever available to them in an effort to close the gaps. That means a multi-pronged approach: from the smart deployment of AI to enhance workers’ productivity, to redoubling investment in skills, to creating more inclusive work cultures, and building flexibility in working hours, location and contract type. Policymakers must also wake up to these shifts in worker preferences and ensure that the full opportunities of the modern labour market can be accessed by every part of society.



Next, we explore how that multi-pronged approach can help design and deliver the work life we want.


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