U.S. firms want to rehire; skilled workers scarce

NEW YORK, July 19 (BestGrowthStock) – Fifty-four percent of large
U.S. businesses that laid off employees in the past year want
to rebuild their workforces but some will have trouble finding
sufficiently skilled people to hire, a study said on Monday.

The study by management consulting firm Accenture (ACN.N: )
found about half of large firms plan to return to their
pre-recession levels of employment within two years and only 13
percent said they planned to reduce their workforce.

Moreover, those surveyed said they were less concerned
about cost control. Companies focused primarily on cost control
will decrease from 41 percent in mid-2009 to 18 percent in
2011, the study said.

U.S. companies focused primarily on investment in
growth-oriented activities, such as hiring, will increase from
24 percent today to 37 percent within the next 12 months,
Accenture said in a news release.

But companies also reported a shortage of skills within the
workforce. Idled workers may have fallen behind on skills while
out of a job, forcing them and employers to invest in training,
Accenture said.

“The outlook is improving. But … companies need to
rethink how they equip employees with the skills required to be
competitive today,” said David Smith, managing director of the
Accenture Talent and Organization Performance practice, said in
a statement.

“If you look at an industry like health care where the
demand for IT (information technology) skills is growing so
fast, there just aren’t that many people with the right IT
skills,” Smith said through a spokeswoman.

Skills were particularly lacking within sales and customer
service workforces, the survey said. Twenty-seven percent of
respondents said their companies lack the skills required of
their sales workforce, and 25 percent said a significant
proportion of skills in their customer service organizations
were out of date.

The study was completed from surveys conducted between
January and May with 674 senior executives in 24 countries
representing companies with revenues over $250 million. The
U.S.-based results were taken from 117 respondents in the
United States.

Stock Market Research

(Reporting by Daniel Trotta; Editing by Doina Chiacu)

U.S. firms want to rehire; skilled workers scarce