NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

In Tight Labor Market, Consumers And Employers Suffer

December 4, 2000

With employers scrambling to find and keep workers, they often must settle for less-than-competent talent. That means frustration for consumers who are more frequently confronted with sub-standard service.

  • According to the American Management Association, 38 percent of job applicants last year lacked sufficient skills for the positions they sought -- up from 23 percent in 1997.
  • In the quest for help, fewer employers are now requiring pre-employment drug, medical and psychological screening.
  • With construction workers in short supply, the average time it takes a contractor to build a new home has climbed from 135 days a year ago to 150 days now.
  • Fed up with poor service while shopping at retail stores, due to the scarcity of sales people, many consumers are avoiding stress by shopping on the Internet.

Source: Leigh Gallagher, "Help Wanted!" Forbes, December 11, 2000.


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