Growing staff shortages in technology, healthcare, education

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Employers in technology, healthcare and education will have an increasingly difficult task filling vacancies in the coming years, according to the University of Maastricht's research center for education and labor market RAO. Over the next five years, the number of jobs in the Netherlands is expected to grow by 520 thousand, with the largest number of vacancies expected to be in technology and healthcare, according to the researchers, NOS reports.

The RAO makes its predictions about developments in the labor market every two years, based on figures from the Statistics Netherlands and the Central Planning Office. The supply side of the prediction - how many students are studying what - is based on data and prognoses from the Ministry of Education. 

The researchers think that the IT sector will have the hardest time filling vacancies in the coming years. A shortage of qualified employees is expected for up to 87 percent of IT professions. 

Also falling under technology, RAO expects that there will also be shortages in architects, engineers and electricians. In this sector there is n increase in the number of graduates, but still not enough to fill all the vacancies. 

Shortages are also expected in primary education, because there is a great demand to replace leaving personnel. Over the next six years, a large proportion of teachers will retire, and there are not enough people in training to replace them. 

The immediate future looks brightest for people with a university degree. Half of them will have good to very good prospects for a job in the coming five years, compared to 43 percent of HBO students and 28 percent of MBO 4 graduates. 

"We must continue to campaign to make young people enthusiastic about technology, healthcare and education", researcher Didier Fouarge said to NOS. "They need to be informed about the good future prospects of these sectors. In this way you can get young people on that path."

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