Indeed Labor Market Report: U.S., Germany, and Canada Lead 12 Major Markets in Unfilled Jobs

Tara Sinclair
Tara Sinclair
  • More than 25% of jobs in U.S. left open after 60 days, 1 out of 5 in Germany and Canada
  • Many roles aren’t seeing high enough wages to lure workers; in-demand positions lack qualified applicants

The U.S., Germany, and Canada lead a new ranking of labor market tightness among 12 major economies as a combination of low wages and a lack of skilled workers has left many jobs unfilled, according to a new global report by job site Indeed.

More than one quarter of jobs in the U.S. are still open after 60 days, and in Germany and Canada it’s about one-fifth of jobs, as these developed markets work to move from economic recovery to expansion.

“The mismatch between employers and job seekers is weighing on productivity, partially explaining a missing spark from the global recovery thus far,” said Indeed Chief Economist Tara Sinclair, author of the report titled Labor Market Outlook 2016: Uncovering the Causes of Global Jobs Mismatch. “There is still time for these markets to hire workers and boost growth, but it will take increased wages along with skilled workers taking in-demand roles, two areas that have underperformed throughout the recovery.”

The types of roles that are open range from cashier to sales manager to aerospace engineer, which if unfilled will continue to make it harder to increase what have been below average global productivity rates, according to the report.

“While it’s important to have strong employer demand for roles, it should be matched with productivity and wage growth,” Sinclair said. “Job openings in themselves are a good sign for the economy, but if they’re not filled it is a missed opportunity for employers, job seekers, and the economy.”

Jobs in information technology and higher-skilled healthcare positions are going empty due to a lack of interested job seekers with the appropriate skill sets, according to the report. Even though these jobs pay higher salaries, there has not been a strong enough push by job seekers to gain the necessary education and experience for these roles, along with a lack of worker training from employers, Sinclair said.

Jobs that do not require advanced degrees are going unfilled in large part due to relatively low wages that aren’t tempting people into the workforce, according to the report.

High rates of formal educational attainment don’t always lead to low unemployment

“Since there is less interest in these jobs in developed economies, it’s up to employers to entice workers with higher wages or more flexibility, and many just haven’t been willing to do that as the economic recovery has struggled to get back to boom times,” Sinclair said.

Read more about the labor mismatch and other global trends in our latest Hiring Lab research report:

Percent of jobs open on Indeed after 60 days by country

1. United States – 25.84%
2. Germany – 20.00%
3. Canada – 18.70%
4. France – 16.07%
5. United Kingdom – 13.09%
6. Australia – 11.66%
7. Japan – 11.12%
8. India – 10.22%
9. Italy – 9.28%
10. Brazil – 7.2%
11. Russia – 1.84%
12. China – 1.42%


About the Hiring Lab

The Hiring Lab is Indeed’s proprietary research arm focused on examining emerging employment trends. Labor Market Outlook 2016: Uncovering the Causes of Global Jobs Mismatch is the sixth Hiring Lab report issued by Indeed. Previous reports include:

Beyond the Talent Shortage: How Tech Candidates Search for Jobs (September 2015)

The Talent Driven Economy: Emerging Interests of Today’s Job Seeker (May 2015)

Three Generations of Talent: Who’s Searching for Jobs Today (December 2014)

Where People Search for Jobs: Cross-Border Labor Mobility Report (July 2014)

What Job Seekers Want: Occupation Satisfaction & Desirability Report (March 2014)

About Indeed

More people find jobs on Indeed than anywhere else. Indeed is the #1 job site in the world and allows job seekers to search millions of jobs on the web or mobile in over 50 countries and 28 languages. More than 180 million people each month search for jobs, post resumes, and research companies on Indeed, and Indeed is the #1 source of external hires for thousands of companies (sources: SilkRoad & iCIMS). For more information, visit



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