Ján Trgala is partner at Jens&Litwak and president of the Association of Personnel Agencies of Slovakia
The lack of a sufficient labour force is currently a significant feature of the Slovak labour market, forcing employers to lower their expectations. Slovakia suffers from a lack of specialists in various sectors and due to the discrepancy between the demands of employers and the offer from the vocational schools, this situation is very unfavourable.
Employers are left with a last resort; they must import labour from third countries (non-EU) or increase their investment in training for their employees. They tend to expect more complexity, flexibility, and willingness to learn new skills on the part of their workers.
Generally speaking, when the labour force is lacking, employers hire people who are willing to work and learn on the job. When offer exceeds demand for work, employers can ask for more qualifications. In Slovakia, however, the labour market has been very slow to catch up with the ability to flexibly react to the challenges posed by the lack of labour force.