Shortage of Skilled Workers in SMBs in Germany

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The shortage of skilled workers in Germany is a pressing issue that has been plaguing the country for several years. As companies struggle to find the right talent to fill their positions, the impact is being felt across various industries, and there seems to be no end in sight. A recent survey conducted in January 2023 revealed that 43.6 percent of companies reported a shortage of skilled workers, a slight decrease from the all-time high of 49.7 percent reported in July 2022, however it’s still a significant figure [1]. This trend is worrisome, and it is essential for the government, businesses, and educational institutions to come together to address this issue and find ways to attract and retain skilled workers. The future of the German economy relies on it.


Despite the increasing demand for skilled workers, there seems to be a persistent shortage of suitable personnel. With over 630,000 open positions remaining unfilled by the end of 2022, companies are struggling to keep up with the ever-changing demands of the industry [2]. To stay competitive and adapt to new standards, businesses need to find ways to attract and retain the best talent available. This calls for a more proactive approach to recruiting, training, and engaging employees to ensure their continued growth and development within the company. Ultimately, addressing the talent shortage will require a collaborative effort between employers, policymakers, and educators to develop innovative solutions and a sustainable workforce for future generations.

Reasons for the Shortage of Skilled Workers

There are various reasons for the shortage of skilled workers in Germany. One major contributing factor is the aging population, which has resulted in a decline in the working-age population and an increase in retirement rates. This demographic challenge has created a gap that many SMBs struggle to fill with qualified employees. Additionally, the demand for skilled workers has also increased due to advancements in technology and automation, requiring a different set of skills than those possessed by the current workforce. The lack of necessary skills among young job seekers further exacerbates this issue.

Another major factor is the constant competition from larger companies that offer higher salaries and better benefits packages. This makes it difficult for SMBs to attract and retain skilled workers, who are often attracted to well-known brands with established reputations. As a result, smaller companies may struggle to compete for top talent, leading to a shortage of skilled workers in their workforce.

Impacts on SMBs

The shortage of skilled workers has significant impacts on SMBs, which form the backbone of the German economy. These businesses face increased competition and struggle to keep up with the changing demands of the market. The lack of skilled workers also affects the overall productivity and growth of companies, as they are unable to fill critical roles that require specialized skills. This shortage can ultimately lead to higher costs, lower efficiency, and missed opportunities for expansion and innovation.

Moreover, the constant turnover rates caused by employees seeking better opportunities elsewhere can be costly for SMBs. The time and resources spent on recruiting, training, and onboarding new employees can drain a company’s budget and hinder its growth potential. Ultimately, the shortage of skilled workers not only affects individual businesses but also has a wider impact on the economy as a whole.

Overcoming the shortage of skilled workers through Migration and integration

Germany’s shortage of skilled workers has become a significant challenge for the country’s economy.  With 23.8 million people in Germany having a migrant background and 13.4 million foreign nationals, it is evident that this group can play a crucial role in filling the skills gap [3]. However, an adequate integration approach will be necessary to leverage this potential. By investing in language and professional training and removing bureaucratic hurdles to employment, Germany can harness the skills and experience of its migrant population and address the pressing need for skilled workers.

Using sylby to help foreign workers speak better German

Foreign workers who are learning to speak German may find themselves encountering various peculiarities and pitfalls of the language. Fortunately, sylby offers a solution to this problem. Developed by linguists, our language learning software uses cutting-edge speech recognition to detect inaccuracies in communication. This technology filters out every nuance of the spoken word and even adapts customized practice plans to the individual needs of the learner. Our AI model is self-developed and gives users detailed and fine-grained feedback to the pronunciation of sounds within a sentence or a word. The tutorial videos are refreshing, give sylby a personal touch and make the latest findings in linguistics and didactics accessible to everyone in an easy-to-understand way. sylby also keeps track of your progress so that you can easily see your achieved goals and further achievements. With sylby, foreign workers who are eager to speak better German have access to top-tier language learning tools. So whether you’re an employer looking to support your foreign workers or a migrant worker striving for better integration, sylby can help bridge the language barrier and pave the way towards a more skilled and diverse workforce.



The shortage of skilled workers in Germany is a complex issue that requires immediate attention from all stakeholders. From government policies and educational institutions providing relevant training to businesses taking a more proactive approach to recruiting and retaining employees, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. However, by working together and leveraging the potential of the country’s diverse population, we can address this challenge and ensure a brighter future for the German economy. Let us not forget that our actions today will shape tomorrow’s workforce.  So let us take action now to create a sustainable and skilled workforce for future generations.  With the help of tools like sylby, we can bridge the language barrier and empower foreign workers to contribute their valuable skills towards our collective success.  Together, we can overcome the shortage of skilled workers and drive innovation and growth in Germany’s economy. Let us all play our part in shaping a better tomorrow.




[3] Migration and integration – German Federal Statistical Office (

 Written by Daniel Quiroga from Punku.

Yamile Vargas
Yamile Vargas