Unfilled Jobs Are Costing the Economy over $1 Trillion a Month

With American professionals quitting their jobs at a slower pace, new research from Fiverr Pro and Lightcast sheds light on the impact of open jobs on businesses and the economy at large

NEW YORK, Nov. 16, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Fiverr International Ltd. (NYSE: FVRR), the company that is changing how the world works together, today released the findings of new research from Fiverr Pro, Fiverr’s end-to-end solution for medium to large businesses seeking top professional talent, in partnership with the economist team at Lightcast, highlighting the high economic cost of open job positions across the country.

According to the analysis from Fiverr Pro and Lightcast, the cost – as determined by the anticipated output in revenue per open role for an average of 3.7 million newly posted open jobs across all industries in 2023* – is a staggering $1.08 trillion per month. Therefore, if every new open role was filled in one month, nearly a trillion dollars would be added to the economy. “Had we filled all of our openings, we could see a potential of around 15% more dollars of economic growth,” comments Ron Hetrick, Senior Labor Economist at Lightcast.

“Our research highlights a critical need for business leaders to revisit their approach to hiring, especially as we enter a new financial year for many. With significant loss of potential business output at risk, businesses should consider other hiring options, such as freelancers, to fill the skills gap and support the wider team to continue driving business output,” comments Shai-Lee Spigelman, GM of Fiverr Pro.

Today’s research also sheds a stark light on how open job positions affect individual businesses’ bottom lines, finding that just one open role costs businesses, on average, nearly $25,000 a month in output. Open positions in the following highly skilled professions cost businesses even more:

  1. Legal (i.e., Lawyers, Legal Support): $48,902/month per open role
  2. Computer & Math (i.e., Software Developers, Data Scientists): $42,458/month per open role
  3. Engineers & Technicians: $37,173/month per open role
  4. Business & Finance (i.e., HR, Marketing, Accountants): $33,800/month per open role
  5. Arts & Media (i.e., Artists, Designers, Media): $30,038/month per open role

“The data begs the question – can businesses really afford to lose out on this much potential growth simply because they can’t fill open positions? Businesses must be smarter about their hiring strategy moving forward,” comments Spigelman. She adds: 2024 must be the time for businesses to finally embrace the freelance movement. With an estimated 6.7 million independent skilled professionals in the U.S. and platforms like Fiverr Pro that fill jobs with skilled, talented freelancers in just one day on average, there is no reason to wait.”

Indeed, new data from Fiverr’s recent report with Harvard Business Review Analytic Services found that 51% of business leaders surveyed agree that in the future, their organization will likely employ more freelance workers than it does now – a good sign that business leaders are starting to consider other, arguably more untraditional ways to fill skills gaps within their organizations. “If anything, I hope our new research today pushes the other 49% to do the same, but now,” adds Spigelman.

From a broader economic perspective, the research clearly points to how sought-after skill sets associated with these professions significantly contribute to the nationwide $1.08 trillion economic cost of open roles. More specifically, jobs in the Computer & Math category, such as Software & Web Developers, System & Security Analysts, and Database & Network Architects, cost over $120 billion per month.

  1. Computer & Math (i.e., Software Developers, Data Scientists): Open roles contributing over $120 billion in economic cost per month across 2.2 million open roles
  2. Business & Finance (i.e., HR, Marketing, Accountants): Open roles contributing $76 billion in economic cost per month across 1.7 million open roles
  3. Engineers & Technicians: Open roles contributing $49 billion in economic cost per month across nearly 1 million open roles
  4. Arts & Media (i.e., Artists, Designers, Media): Open roles contributing $19 billion per month across 485,000 open roles
  5. Legal (i.e., Lawyers, Legal Support): Open roles contributing $12 billion per month across nearly 189,000 open roles

“Many companies have multiple postings of roles critical to their output. Unfilled jobs cost companies real money; there should be a much higher sense of urgency than many companies seem to have,” adds Hetrick.

For more data, see here.

About Fiverr
Fiverr’s mission is to change how the world works together. We exist to democratize access to talent and to provide talent with access to opportunities so anyone can grow their business, brand, or dreams. From small businesses to Fortune 500, over 4 million customers worldwide worked with freelance talent on Fiverr in the past year, ensuring their workforces remain flexible, adaptive, and agile. With Fiverr Business Solutions, large companies can find the right talent and tools, tailored to their needs to help them thrive and grow. On Fiverr, you can find over 600 skills, ranging from programming to 3D design, digital marketing to content creation, from video animation to architecture.

Don’t get left behind – come be a part of the future of work by visiting fiverr.com, read our blog, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

About Lightcast
Lightcast provides trusted global labor market data, analytics, and expert guidance that empowers communities, corporations, and learning providers to make informed decisions and navigate the increasingly complex world of work. With a database of more than one billion job postings and career profiles, our team provides best-in-class customer service with robust data, clear analysis, and expert guidance on skills, jobs, and opportunities.

Headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, and Moscow, Idaho, Lightcast is active in more than 30 countries and has offices in the United Kingdom, Italy, New Zealand, and India. The company is backed by global private equity leader KKR. For more, visit www.lightcast.io.

Ron Hetrick Bio
Ron Hetrick is the Senior Labor Economist and VP of Staffing Product at Lightcast. With 30 years experience in labor economics, he is a leading expert in the current state of the U.S. labor market. He had a 20-year career with Allegis Group building and overseeing market analytics and data science teams and was a senior and supervisory economist for 8 years with the Bureau of Labor Statistics in Washington D.C. Hetrick has provided analysis for prior Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, The Council of Economic Advisors to the President, Congress, and numerous Fortune 100 companies and trade associations.

Data Methodology
Data was gathered by dividing the industry output (as determined by using information from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Gross Output by Industry Table for calendar year 2022) by the number of workers (as determined from the Household Survey for all industries estimate and industry employment annual averages for 2022 for the chosen industries from the Payroll Survey of the Bureau of Labor Statistics). Salary data was calculated by the percentage difference salary of key occupational (SOC 2) groups vs total median salary. Output produced by key industries and SOCs both at the individual level and then value lost for all open positions in those SOCs was calculated by taking the overall Gross Output number divided by the overweighted key SOC 2s and applying those to open positions.

Press Contact
Siobhan Aalders
Laura Podesta

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/b7032404-faf3-40b2-be89-68c5f97739e0

The Impact of Unfilled Jobs on the Economy