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Survey: Worker Shortage Holding Back Finnish Firms’ Growth

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More than six out of 10 major firms in Finland are having an increasingly difficult time recruiting new employees, according to the results of a survey commissioned by the OP Financial Group.

At the same time, more than one-quarter of the surveyed companies said they had to lower their hiring criteria to bring in new staff, the group said in a press release on Tuesday.

The telephone interview survey, conducted by polling firm Taloustutkimus in May, queried 100 Finnish companies with annual turnovers of at least 100 million euros.

More than 60 percent of the firms surveyed said recruitment had become more difficult over the past year due to a shortage of talent. The firms said filling specialist and manual labour positions was particularly difficult.

To fill labour deficits, large companies would like to see more employment-based immigration, according to president and CEO of OP Corporate Bank, Katja Keitaanniemi.

She said bringing in workers from abroad is seen as a possible solution to the labour shortfalls in many sectors.

Companies adding perks like remote

“There is a shortage of workers in the services sector and shortages are accelerating in the telecom industry. The green transition will also require a lot of new know-how in Finland,” Keitaanniemi said in the release.

Around one-third of the companies suggested that personnel shortages would slow down their growth investments.

“Investment slowdowns are especially accentuated in the service sectors. It is difficult to invest if there are no workers,” she said.

At the same time, nearly half of the responding firms said employee shortages were not slowing down investments.

Almost 80 percent of the companies said they had boosted employee retention and engagement methods over the past year.

Companies often said their retention strategies included performance-based compensation, enabling hybrid working arrangements, as well as offering training and employment benefits, according to Keitaanniemi.

She noted that remote working was found to be a “very important criterion” for experts seeking jobs.

Source: Yle

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