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Alabama Skills Gap Study

About The Study

The Alabama Skills Dashboard presents results from the 2013 Skills Gap Survey conducted by the Alabama Department of Labor. The sample selected for the study included 6,926 Alabama employers in the utilities, construction and manufacturing industries. Over 5,000 employers responded, providing information on the recruiting challenges they face, skills gaps that they have identified and their future training needs.

Key Findings

  • 28% of surveyed employers stated that hiring employees with adequate basic skills is moderately difficult, whereas 14% stated that they find it extremely difficult to find these employees.
  • Respondents were five times more likely to report difficulty hiring Experienced positions as compared to manager level position.
  • Employers were more likely to identify gaps in soft skills (41%) than in technical skills (38%).
  • Of the employers who have identified gaps in soft skills, 65% stated that Attendance was a problem. Following Directions and Time Management were the next most often identified soft skill gaps (39% and 36% respectively).
  • Machining was the most common technical skill gap that employers have noticed during their recruiting efforts. Welding and Math skills were also identified as common problems.
  • 60 percent of employers surveyed claimed that they have used On-the-job training in order to meet their skill needs. 13% of those surveyed have not used any source of training and only 14% have use some other source of training (including Career Centers, 3%, and Community Colleges, 5%).
  • When asked to identify emerging technologies that the Alabama workforce needs to be prepared for, few employers were able to offer a response (fewer than 4%), however mobile technology and robotics were the most common responses.