How leaders can improve hiring practices to uncover missed talent pools, close skills gaps, and improve diversity

Companies are increasingly desperate for workers. As they continue to struggle to find people with the skills they need, their competitiveness and growth prospects are put at risk.

At the same time, an enormous and growing group of people are unemployed or underemployed, eager to get a job or increase their working hours. However, they remain effectively "hidden" from most businesses that would benefit from hiring them by the very processes those companies use to find talent.

The irony that companies consistently bemoan their inability to find talent while millions remain on the fringes of the workforce led us to seek an explanation. How could such a breakdown in the fundamental laws of supply and demand occur? Why do companies consistently overlook large pools of talent? What changes would companies have to make to take advantage of that talent? Those became the driving questions behind our recent global study, which included a survey of more than 8,000 hidden workers and more than 2,250 executives across the U.S., the U.K., and Germany.

Our findings illuminate a situation that has worsened because of the pandemic but has, in fact, been growing over recent decades. A single data point made the intractability of the problem apparent—just under half (44%) of middle-skill "hidden workers" reported that finding work was just as hard pre-Covid-19 as it was during our 2020 survey period.

Key Takeaways

About This Report

Reforming the approach to talent acquisition

Developing a customized approach to hiring hidden workers

A clear need for immediate action

Forces reshaping the labor market

Demographic and societal displacement

Technological and automation dislocation

About the Publisher

Published by Accenture

Publish Date

November 2021