Hiring Through 2016 Will Stay Steady, But the Skills Gap Persists

July 7, 2016 Matt Ferguson

Hiring trends in the back half of 2016 will look similar to the second half of last year, with one notable difference: higher wages.

Based on CareerBuilder’s Midyear Jobs Forecast, more than half of employers plan on raising current employees’ wages, and 39 percent will begin offering higher starting salaries in the next six months.

These rising wages are driven largely by competition for talent. Employers are still looking to hire at the same rate as last year, but the supply of qualified candidates isn’t meeting the demand. Monthly hires continue to lag behind job postings, leading 70 percent of human resources managers to say their companies will need to offer higher compensation in order to attract and retain the talent they need.

Increased wages aren’t the only strategy employers are turning to in order to bring in new talent amidst the heightened competition. The forecast found that 1 in 6 employers plan to hire more recruiters over the next six months.

Technology-based roles are fueling much of the competition for talent. Many of the in-demand roles for which employers say they’re recruiting in the back half of the year involve capitalizing on emerging technology:

  • Cloud technology – 12 percent
  • Mobile technology – 11 percent
  • Social marketing – 11 percent
  • Providing a good user experience – 11 percent
  • Developing apps – 9 percent


While we’re going to see a more noteworthy change is in wages, our data show that the overall U.S. job market is likely to experience very similar hiring over the next six months to what we saw this time last year.

In fact, all three of the major hiring statistics tracked by the annual Midyear Forecast are within 2 percentage points of last year’s results:

  • 50 percent of employers plan to hire full-time, compared to 49 percent last year
  • 29 percent of employers plan to hire part-time employees, on par with 28 percent in 2015
  • 32 percent of employers plan to hire temporary or contract workers, down slightly from 34 percent last year


The 2016 Midyear Jobs Forecast reflects an encouraging level of confidence among employers, but at the same time demonstrates the persistence of the skills gap. When the demand for a set of job seeker skills continually outpaces the supply, employers should remember that higher wages and larger recruiting teams aren’t the only tools at their disposal. By investing in the reskilling of current workers or training new hires, employers can effectively create the right worker to fill those open positions, rather than wait for the perfect candidate to come along.


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