Results of a new survey conducted by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce reveal staffing challenges continue to grow and in some cases are even worse than before the pandemic. In its 14th annual employer workforce survey, nearly three-fourths of Indiana employers say the supply of employees does not meet their needs.
The chamber says that number is up from 50% last year at the height of the pandemic.
“One of the biggest takeaways from the survey is that we’re back where we were in 2018 in terms of employers saying the talent supply isn’t where it needs to be,” said Jason Bearce, Indiana Chamber vice president of education and workforce development.
The 2021 Indiana Chamber survey was conducted in late summer and completed by 905 employers in various industries throughout the state.
The results show 62% of employers say meeting their talent needs was among their biggest challenges, with 21% saying it was their top challenge. The chamber says both numbers are at their highest point in the past three years.
Bearce says there are several reasons for lack of qualified employees. “A hesitancy by some to rejoin the workforce is no doubt one and job changes another,” said Bearce.
However, he says the survey does have some silver linings as more than half intend to grow their workforce this year.
“A positive take on this finding is that it could signal an economic rebound or expansion on the horizon with more workers in demand as employers ramp up for growth,” explained Bearce.
The chamber added a new survey question to determine what outside factors most negatively impacted attracting and retaining workers. Insufficient childcare, housing and transportation were the top three items cited.
“It’s become a serious problem across Indiana, and it’s raised questions about the role employers are expected to play in meeting these needs for their employees,” said Bearce. “At the end of the day, it’s pretty clear that businesses that want to grow and attract top talent have to be part of the solution.”
Click here to view the full report.