BERLIN, April 30 (Xinhua) -- The number of jobs vacancies in Germany reached a record high during the first quarter (Q1) of 2018, a regular survey published on Monday by the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) finds.
According to IAB, there were 1.190 million openings in Q1 of this year, marking an annual increase of 126,000 available positions in the German labor market. On a quarterly basis, the number of jobs vacancies increased by around 7,000. The findings were released just a day before Germans celebrate the public holiday of Labor Day on May 1st and defied recent warnings issued by several government bodies that economic growth was beginning to cool.
The study highlighted that companies in Germany were increasingly struggling to fill openings with appropriately-trained staff. Respondents indicated that they had experienced related problems in 43 percent of new hires during the course of 2017, compared to only 36 percent in 2017. Additionally, the average delay between the desired and actual date that employees started working at companies rose from 24 to 27 days during the same period.
"The demand for labor remains high. At the moment, a change in the trend is not in sight" IAB labor market expert Alexander Kubis commented on the findings. A scarcity of skilled labor was hereby experienced by firms of all sizes.
Nevertheless, there were strong regional discrepancies evident in the data. Companies in Western Germany recorded 930,000 vacancies in Q1, while their Eastern German counterparts only had 260,000 openings to fill.
Broken down by types of occupation, "qualified business services providers", which includes jobs like business- and tax consultants, architectures, marketing personnel, market researchers and IT experts, were most in demand with 327,000 openings across Germany. By contrast, industrial manufacturing, the traditional backbone of the German industry only accounted for 163,000 vacant positions.
Based in Nuremberg, IAB is the official research institute of the Federal Labor Agency. The institute arrive at its conclusions by polling circa 9,000 firms operating across diverse sectors of the economy.