One of the most striking economic problems to face a society is that of a labor shortage; one might instinctively think that having too many jobs and not enough workers is a good thing, as that means anyone who wants a job can have one. However, this is not always the case. Labor shortages are often very specialized, meaning that employers have a difficult time finding skilled employees to fill very specific roles; one profession where this is frequently the case is professional truck drivers. There are ample open positions, most of which pay a wage that the average worker would be happy to bring home. Unfortunately, this profession requires very specific training and licensure, resulting in a mismatch between what employers need and the skillset that employees have.
The end result from a labor shortage is that unemployment does not decrease, as people are not finding jobs they qualify for. Similarly, the number of individuals being hired at any given time does not change; the available applicants simply do not meet the requirements. This gradually becomes an employee’s market: employers find themselves over a barrel when it comes to recruiting, hiring, and keeping skilled employees; they need to incentivize working for their location, often through higher wages, bonuses, or advancement opportunities. These increased costs for employers will, naturally, be passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices; the benefits the employees reap will come at the expense of not only the paychecks of their fellow man, but also of their own. With inflation rising and employee costs likely to rise in the coming months, the true cost of the labor shortage might be more than the average worker had ever anticipated.