Whenever employers whine about being unable to find experienced workers, ask yourself “at what rate?” The likely answer is a rate that is less than the job is worth. Now, there’s that.
The job is horrible;
The demands are unreasonable;
The hours are insane;
The working conditions are unfavorable;
Or the employer is ungrateful;
How else can you explain a position that demands the wisdom of a 50-year-old who has 15 years’ experience and is as motivated as a 30-year-old, but the pay scale is that of a 20-year-old? The same job probably requires 20 certificates, a lie detector test, and a security clearance that the organization/company is unwilling to pay for.
Despite offering low wages, most employers also don’t want to train. But they are always looking for ‘qualified’ workers. It is as if they expect colleges to do all the work – both teaching and training. Unfortunately, colleges sell themselves as if they can produce fully ‘experienced’ individuals, but in reality, they are only limited to a few hard skills and essential soft skills to get one’s foot in the door.
Then there are circumstances where employees don’t desire certain jobs, or they look down upon specific jobs and fail to deliver. Afterwards, they get kicked out, and the employers are left with the burden of filling such positions.
Whether it’s the employee’s or employer’s fault; or both, some posts are almost impossible to fill once they are left empty. They include:
15. CERTIFIED NURSING ASSISTANTS (CAN)/CAREGIVING JOBS
These are the people working in nursing homes. They could be physiotherapists, occupational therapists, or even those working in the kitchen.
These positions are always understaffed in almost all facilities, and many employees are always leaving because they get overworked to the point of quitting.
The job is mentally, physically, and emotionally demanding.
As a CAN, you should expect verbal and physical assault; you should also be ready to clean 80-year-old patients who also need a regular nappy change. Sadly, you rarely get time to rest while at work.
Occasionally, a CAN will have to deal with emotional stress when he or she loses a patient. This is mainly because CANs develop close relationships with their patients.
These positions are usually a catch 22 for the employees working there, and the management is always faced with the arduous task of having to replace employees on a regular. When almost all the staff have left, the few remaining get overworked, and the facility is forced to pay for overtime.
14. CONSTRUCTION WORKERS
They are plumbers, carpenters, masons, welders, roofers, and electricians.
There is demand for construction work, but workers are not there. A majority of the construction people were affected by the last recession, and they are probably scared of coming back because they are afraid that history will repeat itself. Some of them even went into other professions like IT.
That is the first problem.
The second issue is that a majority of workers don’t want to engage in manual labor, and this probably comes from the old notion that blue collar work is unintelligent. Therefore, it has become challenging to find skilled tradespeople.
Sadly, even reputable trade schools are becoming rare, and the traditional apprenticeship is somehow vanishing in these fields. The few good ones are getting overworked while the ones that suck are everywhere and are causing losses to businesses and homeowners. A good number of skilled construction workers are between 45-55 years old and are getting ready to retire. Sadly, they are going to leave a ‘vacuum’ that the industry will have difficulty filling.
Teaching jobs are becoming hard to fill because multiple teachers are quitting and education institutions are facing the difficult task of replacing them.
In the UK, teacher shortage is becoming a growing concern as more teachers are leaving the profession due to the poor working conditions and crazy demands from the management and the government. There is also the issue of having to pass too many tests before one is qualified as a teacher.
Most of the positions available – for teachers – in the UK are temporary. To add insult to injury, the pay is crap. Most departments were downsized, and single teachers were left with more responsibilities, but they are not compensated for the extra work. The conditions are worsening because of the frequent attacks on the public sector.
Teachers who are skilled are always looking for better opportunities while those who are unskilled remain ‘stuck’ in those positions. In the state of Arizona, in the U.S, there is a massive shortage of teachers because of the low salaries. In fact, some areas in the U.S have gone to the extent of importing teachers from the Philippines.
12. EMERGENCY /911 DISPATCHER
A good number of emergency/911 dispatcher positions do not offer competitive pay. So they are always dealing with the problem of employee turnover.
How do you expect to find workers who are willing to work at a rate that is slightly above the minimum wage? It is either those employees are incompetent and are afraid of answering the phone, or they will soon realize what the job really entails and will duck out.
The stress is overwhelming, and the workload increases unexpectedly. Therefore, the position requires a multi-tasker who can work on night shifts and can handle all the stresses that the job entails.
A dispatcher should always expect changes to the general orders and be ready to learn something new every week. A good number of them are berated and insulted all day by the people who call seeking help. So this is also something to consider because it can make you lose any empathy for fellow human beings.
11. BUS DRIVER
It doesn’t matter whether it is a school, a charter, or a transit bus driver.
School buses, for example, have an awful schedule and most people tend to shy away from the profession. In addition, the pay sucks and you have to always deal with the stress of maneuvering a large vehicle within the scum of the earth.
Bus drivers must have valid commercial driving licenses, no criminal records, and should not have been involved in DUIs. Well….it is not easy to find someone who can fulfill all these requirements.
In places like the UK, there is always a constant shortage of bus drivers because the industry is suffering from a workforce that is aging and retiring. Most of the drivers who are employed currently would not have qualified some 20 years ago because they are so unskilled. But companies have retained them because of lack of staff.
10. EMERGENCY MEDICAL TECHNICIANS/PARAMEDICS
These positions are always looking for new employees.
And there are many reasons for that.
First, a typical emergency service personnel is expected to work for 60-100 hours a week. Some of them have 24-hour shifts but get a meager pay at the end of the day. In the US, for example, a committed paramedic (who has all the relevant qualifications) will still have difficulty finding a salary that is more than $15/hr.
Second, the work is backbreaking because it sometimes involves lifting humans who are more than 250 pounds and are stuck in a car wreckage. Serious injuries and deaths are common and can sometimes traumatize a worker.
The fact that their pay is abysmal yet doctors earn so much money seems unfair, especially considering that these are the people who run into nasty situations while everyone else flees to safety. We are talking wildfires, collapsed buildings, car wrecks, floods, tornados and all types of dangerous situations.
9. PROGRAMMERS WITH DESIGN SKILLS
While programming and designing are two different fields, employers are always sourcing for employees who straddle between the two skills.
These individuals are always in demand because they are crucial in bridging the gap between development and design. A typical candidate (who possesses both skills) should be able to hand sketch technical drawings then transfer that knowledge to a visual medium and probably a digital painting.
While there are professionals who excel in programming, you will find that they lack in critical and creative thinking. That is why it’s hard to find a web designer who can code and come up with visual style without the help of a graphic designer.
It is also hard to get a hold of these people because there are always better companies that are willing to hire them.
The chef/cook industry has been glamorized by TV shows, but restaurants are having a tough time finding skilled and committed cooks/chefs.
And this is happening in small restaurants as well as high-class hotels. Moving up in this career means more responsibility, and that means taking more blames for anything that goes wrong in the food department. This can also be a problem if the cook is unskilled and incompetent and are simply wannabe foodies.
Also, cooks and chefs rarely get a pay that is commensurate with the kind of work they undertake. This is because restaurants and hotels have prioritized power, rent, and ingredients. Therefore, it is not uncommon for them to cut the cost of labor, and they don’t care even if you are coming from a top culinary school.
Other restaurants have a habit of hiring employees who are willing to work for minimum wage and have no education or experience. But those people don’t last long. They either get fired or quit and this frustrates most of the skilled professionals who are forced to deal with lack of respect and low pay.
People just don’t want to be housekeepers.
The pay is always unsatisfactory, and the work is mostly gross because it mainly involves cleaning up after the ‘slickest creatures’ on the planet. And if by chance you happen to be an excellent housekeeper with good work ethic, you are going to get overworked to the point of quitting because other housekeepers are crap and never wanted work anyway.
The profession has been known for not attracting the best workers, and in most circumstances, managers and other staff are forced to clean the rooms because those responsible leave unannounced.
Hotels, hospitals, and guest houses are always faced with the problem of having to contract agencies because their housekeepers leave go MIA once they realize that their work does not only entail cleaning. Running these facilities then becomes a nightmare because certain gaps cannot be filled.
6. SECURITY OFFICER/GUARD
You need to have a clean record and at least a high school diploma.
The job can be tedious, especially when it is site specific and you have to walk around every hour checking on people. A good example is when you work in a warehouse or an office complex, and you work only entails checking visitors in and instructing them on where to go.
While it can be self-entertaining, it gets annoying over time.
If you are a college student, you can enjoy this job because you have several hours to surf the web, to study, and do your homework. But most guards discover that the job is not intellectually stimulating or that the pay is horrible, and they call it quits.
If you have to guard something valuable, there are dangers because people will always try to break in, and when they do, they always come ‘prepared’ to make your life a living hell.
Some security guards are creepy, and if they are not trying to sell drugs, they are trying to follow women into restrooms.
5. TRUCK DRIVERS
Most truck drivers who are still on the roads are mostly in their 50s or 60s and are about to retire. This has left truck companies with only a few reliable drivers. Therefore, these companies are constantly forced to contract drivers during busy delivery days.
Young people have been avoiding the profession because the hours are crazy, the trips are long, and the job just looks dangerous, especially when it involves moving precious and expensive cargo. The overworking and the exhaustion that comes with being a truck driver is unbearable and has made the profession unattractive to most youngsters.
The pay is also not that great, unless maybe you are leasing a truck and you have lots of experience. But you still have to prepare to stay away from your family for long and to be treated inhumanely.
Then there is the problem of getting a commercial driver’s license and maintaining a good record. A good number of drivers have the licenses but have a poor record and cannot be hired.
4. RESTAURANT DISHWASHERS
Your regular dishwasher is a mischievous pesky individual who gets arrested every weekend for petty crimes. If that is not the case, then he or she lacks all the required immigration paperwork to engage in any form of employment, or speaks horrible English.
Most restaurants and hotels are hurting for them because getting a decent dishwasher is next to impossible. But if you land a good one, it is likely that he or she is already looking for a better opportunity.
Most dishwashers keep leaving their positions because they are underpaid and mostly overworked. And even though they help the cooks to get things in order, restaurants and hotels don’t recognize their importance until they have left. In most restaurants, it is common to see chefs and banquet servers doing their own dishes because a dishwasher has left.
3. AUTOMATIVE REPAIR/MECHANICS/AUTOMATIVE TECHNICIANS
Most of the people who want mechanic jobs cannot pass drug tests, and most of them have a bad driving record.
The ‘mechanics’ who are available are mostly high school dropouts who think the job requires no brain and they can do it even if they lack hands-on skills. These are the mechanics who apply and lie about their experiences and competencies and end up leaving when they realize they can’t do the job.
While the entry-level mechanic jobs aren’t that great, the career requires one to be patient before big bucks and plenty of opportunities start trickling in.
Sadly, millennials continue to ignore this career because of the traditional notion that mechanics are stupid to do anything else and are at the bottom of the society. This has made it difficult to find knowledgeable and experienced professionals.
Most of the good mechanics are getting older and are about to retire. These old mechanics are getting more money thrown at them because their employers can’t replace them.
2. BASIC RETAIL PERSONS
Retail jobs are low paying, and most of the workers are always unmotivated. That is why the people in retail are always looking for better opportunities and employers always constantly have to deal with employee turnover.
A typical retail job involves working long hours and working hard. While doing so, you have to deal with customers from hell who rant all day and make your life miserable.
The customers are not your only nightmare, the bosses too. They yell all the time and will occasionally set out unrealistic goals so they can take a huge chunk of your commission. If a customer steals something, you have to account for it, or you are going to take responsibility. If you are in non-management, always prepare to be treated like crap by dissatisfied customers and ungrateful bosses.
Then if you are the kind that works hard, you will somehow have to pick up the slack of your fellow employees, and this is usually discouraging.
There have been rumors that some people discovered that retail is ‘dying’ and that is why many have chosen to stay out of the industry.
1. SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHERS
Special education teachers are always on demand, but the work can be challenging because it always involves tons of administrative paperwork and forms. And sometimes, the workload is just unbearable.
The job is satisfactory if you love to help kids, but the biggest problem is that it is always hard to find good teachers. Some employees enter the profession because they genuinely have a good heart and are on a mission to help kids, but they discover that the people skills, creativity, critical thinking, and the level of organization required is overwhelming. The job then becomes stressful, and the teacher is forced to quit.
And the pay? Well…it is not commensurate to the kind of work you are expected to perform. Special Ed facilities somehow don’t realize that a teacher requires extra compensation for teaching 20 students while administering medications, changing diapers, and coordinating several other tasks at the same time.
The audacity of some employers is astounding.
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