Highly trained manpower is wasted on low-skilled jobs


One in every three Greek workers are employed in jobs below their skill level, mostly in the civil service, commerce, accommodation and food service, in positions where their skills are not utilized, according to a report by the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV).

At the same time a job in the public sector remains one of the most desired positions in Greece, even if it demands less in the way of skills, while private enterprises find it hard to fill vacancies that require specific expertise. The biggest gaps are reported in technical and professional skills.

In its financial bulletin, SEV refers to the phenomenon of overqualified workers in a number of types of jobs, as well as a lack of people with the skills the labor market needs, noting that considerable resources are invested in education and training but without their sufficient utilization by the domestic labor market.

According to the federation, having workers in positions where their skill sets are underutilized has a negative effect on the employees themselves, on the corporations and the economy in general. Labor productivity tends to be lower in markets where skills demand does not match supply, and employment in low-skilled jobs constitutes one of the main reasons for the emigration of high-standard human resources.

The rate of overqualified employment in the domestic labor market jumped 60.6 percent from 2008 to 2017, resulting in more than three in 10 highly skilled workers being employed in positions with lower requirements. This imbalance between skill demand and supply is attributed to two main reasons: The creation of jobs in economic sectors that are now knowledge-intensive, and the lack of communication between the education system and the labor market.