Until relatively recently, examining the balance between skills demand and supply in the labour market was primarily focused on the identification of skills shortages and skills surpluses, summarised each year in the National Skills Bulletin (demand) and the Monitoring Ireland Skills Supply (potential supply) reports. However, the topic of skills mismatch1 has been gaining increasing amounts of attention amongst education and labour market policy makers, especially since 2017 when the OECD reported that almost half (44%) of Ireland’s workforce was mismatched. This estimate was based largely on the qualification level (frequently used as a proxy for skills) of those in employment,2 with over-qualification (or under-qualification) in the labour market identified in situations where workers held a higher (or lower) qualification than their job was deemed to require.
The key message is that almost half of people working in clerical roles could be over-qualified for their jobs. At the same time, just 12% of online job vacancies required candidates for clerical roles to hold third level education. Skills mismatch is not just about under-qualification.
Spring Skills Bulletin_compressed