The STEM Talent Shortage: Technology

HIGHLIGHTS
  • Hard facts of the skills gap
  • Pricey, quick fixes
  • The better solution

In our STEM Talent Shortage series, we examine four industries impacted by a lack of available workers in STEM fields.

You’ve probably read the popular NASA quote: “Your cell phone has more computing power than the computers used during the Apollo era.”

Technology is not only more powerful now than ever, it’s rapidly changing — and as employers shift their capabilities requirements to keep up, it’s also a primary driver of the U.S. skills gap.

Hard facts of the skills gap
In the next decade, there will be 1.4 million unfilled computer specialist roles, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. And estimates predict new university graduates will only fill 30 percent of the open positions.

Pricey, quick fixes
The Boston Globe reports that developers fresh out of college are welcomed to starting salaries of up to $90,000. As they settle into these new jobs, they’re bombarded with a dozen recruiting calls every day, each with enticing financial incentives. And those who take the bait receive up to a 25 percent bump in salary.

In addition to offering higher-than-average salaries, companies are investing in other expensive recruiting solutions. In 2013, HubSpot offered a $30,000 bounty for assistance hiring software engineers and designers. Outside of looking for new talent, organizations are also paying for coding boot camps and online courses to reskill workers. But there’s a more efficient way to find top talent than spending $30k to fill an open position or retraining every worker.

The better solution
Leading companies are incorporating foreign workers into their talent acquisition strategy and seeing rewarding results. Learn more about the talent shortage and how employers are overcoming its challenges in Skills Gap to Skills Surge: How foreign workers fuel talent pipelines.