New report suggests skills shortage in Switzerland is at an all-time high

New report suggests skills shortage in Switzerland is at an all-time high

A new report has found that the continual lack of skilled staff in Switzerland is having a significant impact on businesses and international companies. The latest skills index by the University of Zurich has found that the skilled worker shortage in the alpine nation has never been so severe.

Worker shortage in Switzerland at an all-time high

According to the Swiss university, the skills shortage index - a scientific measure of the number of skilled jobs advertised in Switzerland in print, online and on company websites - has shot up to 155 points in 2022, an increase of 68 percent compared to the previous year. Swiss newspaper Watson explained that the index has never been as high as it is today.

Adecco, the company that runs the metric, blamed the upswing on the strong economic recovery Switzerland had after the COVID pandemic, which has now lifted the number of job adverts to record highs. Unlike previous worker shortages, companies in practically all sectors are in need of more workers, although the most prominent shortages are in the engineering, healthcare and IT sectors.

The biggest rise in demand was recorded in German-speaking areas, where the number of highly skilled vacancies has increased by 77 percent in the last year. The university blamed the above-average increase on the fact that the region was more economically affected by the COVID pandemic than other areas.

Vacancies reach new highs as unemployment in Switzerland falls

What’s more, the current shortage of workers is unlikely to be solved by employing domestic labour, as the number of people claiming unemployment benefits in Switzerland has also declined significantly. Therefore, it will most likely be up to new expats and internationals to fill the significant number of vacancies - which is predicted to be at an all-time high by the KOF.

Corinne Schieber, the head of Adecco Medical, told Watson that not enough people are being educated at Swiss universities to plug the severe gap in skills. She noted that there are too few specialised doctors and healthcare workers in Switzerland, along with IT and software developers, and skilled engineers.

Adecco concluded that the demand for skilled professionals in Switzerland will continue to increase. They noted that in the future, “Rather than companies selecting their employees, it will increasingly be the other way around,” with employees given more power over deciding salaries and work contracts.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Editor for Switzerland at IamExpat Media. Jan studied History at the University of York and Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield. Though born in York, Jan has lived most...

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