Worker Shortages an Ongoing Problem

Businesses nationwide are experiencing worker shortages. Recent articles demonstrate that a labor shortage has particularly affected the restaurant and hospitality industries. For instance, Milwaukee’s Glorioso’s has reduced its hours, closing one day per week. The Milwaukee County Transit System recently stated that there will be no shuttle services for Summerfest this year, as it could not find enough workers. In other cases, employees are simply quitting, sometimes in dramatic fashion.

One consequence of all this may be an influx of teenage workers filling the labor void. While the Bureau of Labor Statistics has indicated that teenagers have been gaining employment faster than any other age group thus far in 2021, the trend is not evenly spread among all demographics (e.g., white teens have outgained other groups while Hispanic teens have lost jobs). Further, and for a variety of reasons (e.g., teenage worker turnover), this trend is likely unsustainable, but one many businesses may rely on in the near term.

Business Takeaway: Many businesses are struggling to attract and retain talent, and solutions are dependent on industry, region, role, and various other factors. These issues have also arisen when many of the same businesses are trying to transition from simply “keeping afloat” to moving forward. What have you done in this regard, and has it worked?

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