Each job vacancy costs companies 29,000 euros

Düsseldorf, 02/05/2022

  • The balance of power is shifting in the labor market: While job seekers are experiencing golden times, it is becoming increasingly difficult for companies to find employees
  • An vacant position costs employers on average 29,000 euros, and in big companies even more than 73,000 euros - this is shown by new calculations by StepStone
  • "The problem of the future is not called unemployment, but labor shortage. The ability to find the right employees quickly is becoming absolutely game-changing for companies," says StepStone labor market expert Dr. Tobias Zimmermann

The number of job vacancies has been breaking records for months. On StepStone.de, the number of job vacancies in March 2022 once again reached an all-time high. The number of jobs increased by 55 percent compared with March 2021. In areas such as HR (+85 percent), logistics (+82 percent), healthcare (+70 percent) and skilled trades (+67 percent), demand even developed at an above-average rate. For employees, this means that they have a choice. "Companies are desperately seeking new employees in all areas - despite current uncertainties due to the war in Ukraine and the pandemic," says Dr. Tobias Zimmermann, labor market expert at StepStone. "In the next few years, the number of open jobs will continue to increase, because the working population is shrinking dramatically. The problem of the future is no longer called unemployment, but labor shortage.This will fundamentally change the balance of power - in favor of workers."

Labor Shortage can be costly for companies

If the number of vacant jobs increases and at the same time there are fewer and fewer available employees, for companies this means: It becomes more difficult to find employees. "Companies are already losing revenue because it takes them a very long time to fill a vacancy. In the future, companies will therefore have to invest much more in rapid recruiting and long-term employee retention. Because that's the only way they can ensure their competitiveness in times of labor shortage," says Zimmermann. According to a new StepStone analysis, the "cost of vacancy "* - i.e. the cost that a vacant position causes for the company - is 29,000 euros on average. In companies with more than 250 employees, the costs even exceed 73,000 euros. The empty desk is particularly expensive in the healthcare sector, where the "Cost of Vacancy" averages around 37,700 euros, as well as in IT (37,300 euros) and in sales (36,600 euros). But even in the skilled trades (32,600 euros) and in production (30,800 euros), labor shortage costs companies a lot of money. "At StepStone, we want to combat labor shortage and connect companies with the right candidates much faster by automating the recruiting process," says Zimmermann. "After all, successful recruiting is not about collecting as many applications as possible, but about bringing together exactly those companies and people who really fit together in as short a time as possible," says Zimmermann.

Unemployment figures April 2022: StepStone forecasts upward trend

The job market experts at StepStone forecast unemployment figures on a monthly basis. For April 2022, they expect 25,000 fewer unemployed compared to the previous month and 434,000 fewer unemployed than in the same month last year. That brings the rate down to 5.0 percent - the lowest level since the the beginning of the pandemic. "The upward trend in the labor market continues," Zimmermann said. "There will be no reversal of the trend in the coming decades. The metric for the labor market of the future and its challenges will soon no longer be the number of unemployed, but the number of labor shortage - that is, the number of vacant jobs."

April 2022 unemployment rate at a glance:

-25,000 to 2,337,000

Unemployment rate compared to previous year (April 2021):

-434.000

Unemployment rate compared to previous month:

-0.1 percentage points to 5.0 percent