Suitable employees as an image problem? Just make yourself the specialists!


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Complain in a branch like IT or social professions Company about skills shortage. But it is partly homemade, for example due to a bad image. What to do?

Suitable employees as an image problem? Just make yourself the specialists! Suitable employees as an image problem? Just make yourself the specialists!


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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisher, German Top20 blogger and Consultant for HR communication.

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Specialists do not grow on trees

The discussions on the subject of skills shortages are always astonishingly contradictory: While some claim that there is no shortage, others complain that they cannot find suitable employees - and are happy to start “hip” personnel marketing campaigns, which are thrown away in a hectic and desperate manner To attract specialists in particular.

In reality, companies that complain about a shortage of skilled workers are often even to blame for their own dilemma. And they could even solve it themselves. I remember an event where I attended speakers such as HR scientist Jutta Rump or Gerd Zirka from the Institute for Employment Research on the podium of a meeting by Young IT Professionals (YITP) in Heidelberg.

The solution to the skills shortage problem: Get active yourself

Opinions differed as to how companies can attract and retain skilled workers, but at the end of the day a standing crystallized out: skilled workers are generally not readily available, how many companies want them to, they do not grow on trees ,

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Rather, companies that lack well-qualified employees have to take action themselves instead of waiting for suitable applications. One possibility for this could be your own trainee programs. And by that I don't mean, hip employer branding videos and other advertising gimmicks to somehow attract applicants, but training and further education measures that are becoming more and more an employer branding trend anyway.

Is education and training too complicated?

Because honestly, it is about making a virtue out of necessity: in many areas, the necessary expertise is already so new that there is no longer any standardized vocational training. The solution: Simply train the employees themselves.

Strangely, the word "skills shortage" is often heard of companies that find it too complicated to train employees or who think that they do not have the right structures for them.

Training with 50 employees

Mediafix GmbH in Cologne is taking different paths: the company digitizes old film reels, video cassettes and slide photos. Since the digitization devices were specially developed for the StartUp, new employees have to be trained:

"We have created a five-day apprenticeship that concludes with an examination as a media digitizer", explains Mediafix founder Hans-Günter Herrmann. "Content includes materials science, quality guidelines and device operation."

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Sound training = better service

Twelve new employees are trained each year, and the trend is rising. Herrmann does not see the training as an additional effort:

"Since we operate in a niche, the necessary expertise on the job market simply does not exist." However, the training also helps to reduce costs. "We have created standardized processes and can thus keep a very reasonably priced offer," says Herrmann.

Binding standards are important

The IHK-certified CrowdFunding Manager (in) of IHK München in cooperation with the German Crowdsourcing Association is also committed to binding standards.

"We offer consultants and experts in companies a sound basis for providing comprehensive advice on crowd funding and realistically assessing the risks involved in campaigns," explains Thomas Kölbl, Head of Seminars at the IHK Academy Munich and Upper Bavaria, explaining the motivation for the course.

Set standards in the job market

He makes it clear: "On eight days of the seminar, the participants will develop their own project in addition to the theoretical basics and will then complete a certificate test. Our coach Dr. Michael Gebert supports them with his practical experience, "says Kölbl.

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This shows that companies can easily create their own training and further education. If they work together with institutions that operate nationwide, such as the IHK, they can even set standards in the labor market.

TV presenter Tobias Schlegel as a paramedic

However, there is not only one qualification problem when it comes to the shortage of skilled workers. Some fires are simply unattractive because of poor pay for inhumane working hours. This results in a tangible image problem from which sectors such as helping and social professions or tourism suffer.

But that could be remedied with very simple means. This includes, for example, that in addition to better pay, the positive, meaningful aspects of the work would be emphasized more. TV host Tobias Schlegel caused a big surprise last week with his announcement that he would quit his job and want to work as a paramedic in the future. His motive: to do something socially relevant.

High satisfaction from social professions

Social professions, for example in nursing care, do not necessarily have the best image. Nevertheless, employees often draw great satisfaction from their activities. This also seems to have been Schlegel's motive for the change.

Hans Pauli from Inzell, Bavaria, changed from a leading position at Deutsche Telekom to a full-time position in the management of the location at the Bergwacht Bavaria, where he had been working as a volunteer for 26 years. There he is now responsible for the maintenance and maintenance of the digital radio stations of the authorities, which was put into operation at the G7 summit 2015.

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Image and reality

Not a simple activity, as he says, "you also see a lot of bad things". While it always goes well in television series such as "The Mountain Rescue", this is unfortunately not the case in reality. Spectacular helicopter and abseil activities would normally also be much more prudent: "Life and safety of pilots and helicopters go by," says Pauli.

Presumably these television series contribute a lot to the heroic image of social professions - while the bad image has different reasons: Often simply an adequate pay is missing, which is appropriate to the social relevance of these occupations.

Lobby work is required

According to Portalvergleichvergleich.com, the average salary for social facilities is an average of 2414 Euro gross.

Meanwhile, senior managers with an average of 1715 Euro per month are at the end of the scale, while managers earn about 3000 Euro. Here, a lot of lobbying and image work is needed to remedy the situation.

Companies - blame for their own dilemma?

Tourism is also an industry that is badly affected by the lack of skilled workers due to its image. The successful employer like Markus Gutheinz, who has just been awarded the Instructor of the Year award in Austria, shows that there is another way.

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His recipe: He pays the employees of his hotel "Jungbrunn" every hour they spend, provides housing, food and work clothes - and also training: In addition to the vocational school, the trainees learn in a separate academy expertise and soft skills.

Fluctuation belongs to it

While many companies shy away from investing in employees because they are afraid of leaving, Gutheinz is relaxed: "Fluctuation is a part of tourism. We even motivate people to gain experience in other homes, "he says.

This is worthwhile: The hotel has long since established itself as an employer brand, the employees come from 14 nations to work in the remote Tannheimer Valley.

The "Jungbrunn" as a reference is worth a lot. And many even come back years later. "The employees are the mirror of the company philosophy," explains the hotelier, who has recognized one thing: appreciation for the employees is the best personnel marketing.

The discussion on the topic

As expected, it has to do that Article already given a number of comments and reader reactions in the world. They show how great the frustration on the part of job seekers is. So it says: This is all just imagegedöhns. the labor market has been so diluted by Hartz4 that the now-promoted multilingual staff can be found under 12 € the hour. If garnix helps more is jmd from Poland, which work even for 10 € / h. There is no shortage of skilled workers! Appreciation is the best HR marketing ?? - Ha, ha, good joke

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We have enough good people in the companies but performance and effort are simply not rewarded. The more you show performance and commitment, the more people are generally used and exploited.

We have enough young people looking for a job, if they are lucky they get a temporary job at a pittance.

These are the facts on the subject !! Appreciation? There are still enough companies that run entire departments with temporary workers thanks to the Hartz shame and these are all specialists. But as long as the state makes that possible, nothing will change. Everything is not entirely wrong, however, the worthy commentators have probably overlooked that the above example comes from Austria, where the employment law is still a lot more employee-friendly.

In addition, the article does not deny these facts: However, there are still small and medium-sized companies that still complain about a shortage of skilled workers despite the circumstances you have described. The article gives reasons for this and shows solutions, there are further solutions in the article The fairy tale of skills shortage - A question of perspective.

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