Press release: Growing demand for industry professionals in…

Adecco Group

A document

Switzerland labor shortage index: growing demand for industrial professionals in southwestern Switzerland

Zurich, 28 November 2022 – After an easing of tension due to the COVID-19 pandemic over the last two years (2020 and 2021), the shortage of skilled labor in Switzerland is increasing again spectacularly. The shortage rate of skilled labor is currently at an all-time high, making staff recruitment a major challenge for companies. Positions for healthcare professionals, computer scientists and engineers are particularly difficult to fill at the moment. In southwestern Switzerland, the demand for industrial professionals has particularly increased. This is revealed by the Adecco Group Switzerland Labor Shortage Index and the Swiss Labor Market Monitor at the University of Zurich.

COVID-19 pandemic: a blessing in disguise for the Swiss job market

The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly shaken the Swiss job market over the past two years. The outbreak of the pandemic and the measures that accompanied it severely impeded large sectors of the economy in 2020 and 2021. Despite the introduction of large-scale economic support measures and the extension and simplification of benefits in the event of a reduction in working hours, the effects on the labor market were clearly perceptible. Unemployment numbers skyrocketed. At the same time, companies were looking for significantly fewer people, as evidenced by the drop in the Employment Index. These two opposing effects resulted in the need for skilled labor falling to its lowest level in 2021.

Only with access to vaccination and the gradual lifting of restrictions did the need for consumption increase sharply, both nationally and internationally. The strong economic recovery very quickly boosted the number of vacancies to new levels. Companies across all industries suddenly needed many more employees to meet increased demand. The growing need for staff has caused unemployment numbers to drop dramatically. While SECO still counted 120,294 unemployed as of September 2021, there were only 89,526 as of September 2022. Even the categories of unemployed that tend to have a longer replacement period, such as the 50-64 year olds (-25.6%) and the long-term unemployed (-47%) benefited from companies’ thirst for personnel. Despite these findings, the increase in the shortage of skilled labor is surprising. The labor shortage index reached a record high of 155 points this year, a value never recorded before. The current index is 68% higher than the year 2021. It is also 21% higher than the value of the year before the crisis, 2019.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has been like a rollercoaster for the Swiss job market. While labor needs reached a historically low level last year, they have soared this year to reach an unprecedented level. The retirement of the baby boomers, as well as discussions about productive reshoring and nearshoring activities due to the global context of uncertainty, should lead to an even greater increase in the need for labor. That is why, more and more, it is not companies that choose their employees, quite the contrary. 🇧🇷

Marcel Keller, Country Head of Adecco Switzerland

Greater staff shortages among health professionals

Health professionals (such as specialist doctors, specialist nurses or pharmacists) lead the labor shortage rankings. This professional category was already facing a strong shortage of labor before the pandemic. The situation only got worse after that. Corinne Scheiber, director of Adecco Medical, observes: “One of the reasons for the worsening shortage of healthcare professionals is that Switzerland does not train enough specialized personnel to meet the real demand for these professions. To fill this gap, a substantial part of the are recruited from abroad. According to the Swiss Health Observatory, the proportion of nursing staff with foreign qualifications in Swiss hospitals and health establishments amounted to 30% in 2019. Medical statistics from the FMH give a similar result for the doctors. Many healthcare professionals come from neighboring countries. However, these countries also face a growing shortage of healthcare professionals. This results in an intensifying competition around these specialists. Yanik Kipfer of the Swiss Labor Market Monitor adds: ” Growing labor shortages put additional pressure on the existing health workforce as the workload increases. work increases due to staff shortages. Corinne Scheiber adds: “The difficult working conditions and the slow implementation of the assistance initiative lead to a feeling of frustration. As a result, many professionals opt for temporary positions, which promise better pay and more flexibility than a permanent job. 🇧🇷

Then come the developers and analysts of software and computer applications (computer engineers, software developers or systems analysts, for example). Like the health professions, this professional category has suffered for several years from a severe shortage of manpower, which has worsened again this year, reaching a record level. James Peck, Vice President of LHH Recruitment Solutions in Switzerland, notes: “Software developers with experience in object-oriented programming languages ​​such as Java or C#, and front-end software developers familiar with Angular or React frameworks are desperately in demand. at the time. “

The surprise comes from the professional category of information and communication technicians (web content managers, telematics or e-commerce specialists, for example), which lost eleven positions in the ranking this year. And this, after a sudden increase in the need for manpower in this professional category in 2021. Yanik Kipfer, from the Swiss Job Market Monitor, gives an explanation: “Information and communication technicians seem to have benefited from the increase in demand for e-commerce solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the e-commerce boom appears to be returning to normal as noted by the Swiss Retail Federation. This also leads to stagnant demand in these businesses. »

In addition to foremen, foremen and production managers, who rank 4th, industrial trades are also heavily affected by labor shortages. Thus, engineering and related professionals (technicians in mechanical engineering, electrical technicians or process controllers in the production of metals, for example) occupy the third place and polymechanics / – engineers, production mechanics, machine mechanics and machinists the fifth. Labor shortages in these professional categories increased sharply from one year to the next. Yanik Kipfer of the Swiss Labor Market Monitor notes: “The strong demand for labor in industrial areas is a sign that Switzerland still has a strong industrial base. James Peck, Vice President of LHH Recruitment Solutions in Switzerland, completes his remarks: “To face international industrial competition, Swiss industry has specialized in complex and highly technical niche products, such as the production of precision tools, medical technologies or the development and construction of subsystems for aeronautics and aerospace. This results in different market niches for industrial professions, in which profiles with very specific knowledge are sought. This knowledge is difficult to transfer to other niches, which makes it difficult to search for skilled workers Tom Vanoirbeek, Vice President of Adecco Workforce Solutions Western & Southern Switzerland, adds: “In technical businesses such as watchmaking, we are facing a major labor shortage, which affects not only highly skilled people but also unskilled work. Adecco Switzerland therefore created the Watch Academy in Geneva to invest in new talent. The Watch Academy’s mission is to train people with a talent for manual work in the watchmaking professions, to enable them to break into this unique sector. 🇧🇷

The lower part of the ranking regroups occupational categories marked by an excess of labor supply. In these trades, the number of people looking for a job is greater than the number of vacancies. Assistants, agricultural, forestry and fishing professionals (kitchen helpers, gardeners or parcel delivery men, for example) come last, followed by executives, clerical and general secretarial personnel and other office workers (typists, library or reviewers, for example ). For many occupational categories at the bottom of the rankings, labor needs dropped dramatically with the onset of the pandemic. However, the worsening shortage of labor is already perceptible, including in professional categories where the supply of labor is excessive. That is, the situation is clearly improving for employees in these occupational categories in relation to the previous year, as there are fewer candidates competing for vacancies. At the same time, this means that it is increasingly difficult for companies to find suitable labor, including in the professional categories at the bottom of the ranking.

Southwest Switzerland: Growing difficulties in staffing among industry professionals

The need for skilled labor in southwestern Switzerland (GE, VS, DV, IT) initially reached a low level in 2021 due to the pandemic, falling no less than 28% below the pre-crisis level. This year, the labor shortage index in southwestern Switzerland has seen a strong increase of +56%, reaching a record level. This is 11% higher than the 2019 figure. The need for industry professionals such as metallurgists (e.g. metal polishers, round grinders or machine tool fitters), machine operators and assemblers (e.g. machinists, textile technologists or production workers) as well as polymechanics, production mechanics, machine mechanics and machinists in particular have increased significantly this year. It is therefore much more difficult for companies in southwest Switzerland to recruit skilled labor in these businesses.


Service presse du Groupe Adecco Suisse
Jessica Jocham, tél. +41 79 318 43 37, 

Moniteur du marché de l’emploi suisse, Université de Zurich
Yanik Kipfer, tél. +41 44 635 23 02,

À propos de l’Adecco Group Swiss Job Market Index (Job Index)

En collaboration avec le  Moniteur du marché de l’emploi suisse (MME) de l’Institut sociologique de l’Université de Zurich, le Groupe Adecco Suisse publie l’Adecco Group Swiss Job Market Index (Job Index) en janvier, avril, juillet et octobre. Le Job Index propose une mesure scientifique et globale de l’évolution de l’offre d’emplois en Suisse sur les portails d’emploi en ligne et les sites Web des entreprises. Il s’appuie sur des enquêtes trimestrielles représentatives des offres d’emploi dans la presse, sur les portails d’emploi en ligne et sur les sites Web des entreprises.

À propos du Groupe Adecco Suisse

Le Groupe Adecco Suisse est le n° 1 suisse du domaine des ressources humaines. Comptant plus de 700 collaborateurs sur plus de 50 sites dans toutes les régions linguistiques, nous aidons chaque année près de 26 000 spécialistes à trouver un nouveau défi professionnel. Nos marques spécialisées sont expertes dans leur domaine. Le Groupe Adecco Suisse propose des solutions sur mesure non seulement aux demandeurs d’emploi mais encore aux petites, moyennes et grandes entreprises dans le domaine des ressources humaines: recrutement pour des emplois fixes ou temporaires, payroll services, dissociation et externalisation de processus RH complets, planification professionnelle, promotion et mobilité des talents. En Suisse, nous sommes représentés par les marques suivantes: Adecco, Adia, Akkodis, Pontoon Solutions, Lee Hecht Harrison et General Assembly.

Le Groupe Adecco Suisse est une société du Groupe Adecco, le leader mondial du conseil et des solutions en matière de talents. Nous sommes convaincus que chacun doit être prêt pour l’avenir, c’est pourquoi nous trouvons du travail à plus de 3,5 millions de personnes chaque jour. Nous formons, développons et recrutons des talents dans 60 pays, permettant aux organisations de contribuer au développement de l’avenir du travail. En tant que société classée au palmarès Fortune Global 500, nous montrons l’exemple en créant des valeurs partagées qui alimentent les économies et construisent des sociétés meilleures. Le Groupe Adecco a son siège à Zurich, en Suisse (ISIN: CH0012138605) et est coté à la SIX Swiss Exchange (ADEN).

Leave a Comment