Sick of hearing those stories about hundreds of people applying for one single job? Well, it turns out that lots of UK companies are actually having trouble finding the right people with the right qualifications to fill their vacancies.
According to a 2016 survey by the CBI, over two thirds of employers lack confidence that they'll be able to find enough people to fill high-skilled jobs. A separate report found that 16% are finding it extremely hard to recruit the right people for most of their vacancies.
We've rounded up the top 5 jobs areas by number of unfilled vacancies according to the government's latest report, published in 2015 (as of 2018, another one is due out soon).
'Worried you won't find a job? Rest assured - here are 5 areas of work where there are loads of opportunities'
1. Business services
Business services encompasses all those jobs that are essential to running a business but aren't actually involved in making things or providing services to customers. That includes things like IT and human resources (HR). In the latest government report, published in 2015, there were 50,600 skills shortage vacancies in this field of work.
- Finance officer: Processes payments to and from the company.
- HR manager: Responsible for hiring new staff, looking after the team, and making sure the company abides by health and safety law.
- Database manager: Looks after the company's database of customers and other contacts.
- PR officer: Responsible for developing the company's public image and reputation by keeping the media informed about goings-on the business wants to promote.
2. Wholesale and retail
Wholesalers are companies that sell goods in bulk to other companies. These companies then sell them on as wholesale, or act as retailers, selling goods individually to members of the public like you and me. This field encompasses jobs in logistics - getting stuff from A to B - and also roles in customer services selling things to buyers. In 2015, there were 26,200 vacancies in this area.
- Buyer: Order things in the right quantity at the right time.
- Store manager: Responsible for the day-to-day running of a shop, managing people and making sure there is enough of the right stock on display at all times.
- Logistics operative: Works out how to get things from the factory to the warehouse to the shop in the cheapest and most efficient way.
- Merchandiser: Make sure products appear in the right time and the right place.
3. Healthcare and social work
Healthcare workers are the people who keep us healthy, like doctors and nurses. Social workers work in the community, making sure people at risk because of poverty, disabilities or a challenging family background get the right support and protection. There were 25,600 vacancies in this area in 2015.
- Nurse: Nurses provide routine medical care to patients in hospital and at GP surgeries.
- Surgeon: Perform operations on patients.
- Consultant: Oversee the investigation, diagnosis and treatment of illness and conditions.
- Social worker: Work with individuals and families in the community to protect vulnerable people.
- Nursery nurse: Monitor the development of children in their early years, and help parents and guardians provide the best care for young children.
4. Transport and communications
Transport workers are responsible for delivering goods to our shops and supermarkets, and driving buses and trains to get passengers where they need to go. Whenever your Amazon package arrives, that's down to a transport worker - and when you catch the bus to school, a transport worker gets you there on time. Communications workers keep us connected by phone and internet. There were 23,700 vacancies in this field in 2015.
- Train driver: Drive passenger and goods trains.
- Delivery agent: Deliver packages to homes and companies.
- Telecommunications engineer: Maintain and repair telecomms infrastructure - the wires and cables and other things that keep you connected by mobile, laptop and landline phone, and keep your TV tuned in.
5. Hotels and restaurants
We all enjoy eating out from time to time, and more and more, many of us like to grab a bite (or a drink) on the go. Without restaurant workers, this would be much harder, because they cook and serve us the good we order. Hotel staff keep things ticking over for holidaymakers and business people and other travellers, cleaning rooms, taking care of bookings, and generally keeping things spick and span and running smoothly. There were 19,400 vacancies in this area of work in 2015.
- Barista: Make and serve coffee.
- Waiter: Take and deliver orders in a restaurant or hotel.
- Chef: Prepare and cook food in restaurant kitchens.
- Cleaner: Keep restaurants and hotels clean and tidy.
- Bookings clerk: Take bookings at a hotel or restaurant.
- Events manager: Responsible for events taking place in hotels and restaurants, from conferences and business events and weddings and birthday parties.
Check out our Career Zones for more advice on jobs and careers.