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Labor shortages have carried on for several months in the United States, prompting many operators to offer higher wages, better benefits — or even turn to automation. Read on to learn how labor trends are challenging five key markets.


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1. National Trucking

Operators in this market are facing a severe driver shortage

  • The market for national trucking services is currently experiencing an ongoing driver shortage, which has exacerbated the current global supply chain crisis. This crisis is being fueled by growing retirement rates of drivers, with few prospects lining up behind them to take their place on the road.
  • Suppliers in the market are facing pressure to increase pay, add sign-on bonuses and strengthen benefit packages offered to drivers in order to attract new workers to their companies.
  • Market leaders are also expanding their search into demographics that have previously been underrepresented in the market, including women and inner-city residents. Suppliers have also recently begun lobbying the government to modify federal law to allow drivers under the age of 21 to cross state lines. Learn more

2. Call Center Services

Workers in customer-facing roles are quitting at higher rates. 

  • Data from the Labor Department has shown that workers in customer-facing roles, including customer service representatives and call center employees, are leaving their jobs at much higher rates than workers in other markets currently experiencing labor shortages.
  • Surveys from research firms across the country have shown that the reason for workers leaving these call centers is increasing customer disrespect. Workers in the industry also have cited being unprepared to deal with customer complaints due to supply chain issues. Learn more

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3. Compensation & Benefits Planning

Demand for market services increases as wages see record growth

  • Wages in the US economy have posted the largest three-month jump in 20 years in the quarter ending September 2021. Along with the increase in wages, benefit costs rose nearly a full percentage point, up by more than double from the previous quarter.
  • This data comes as a result of trends in the economy, with workers demanding better pay and benefits packages as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and its related impacts. Learn more

4. Tanks & Cylinders

Market leading Trinity Industries negatively impacted by labor shortages

  • Trinity Industries third quarter results were negatively impacted by labor shortages, high turnover and supply chain disruptions, according to the CEO and President Jean Savage. While financial metrics were disappointing, the company does not see this as a sign for concern as they project demand and profitability will both increase as supply chain issues continue to resolve themselves. Learn more

5. Cafeteria Management

The hospitality industry is suffering from labor shortages

  • Restaurants and cafeterias around the United States have said that labor shortages are hurting their operations.
  • Many restaurants and cafeterias got rid of workers in 2020 because they had closed or reduced their operations during the coronavirus pandemic, but now business is rebounding and more workers are needed.
  • 6.8% of hospitality workers quit their jobs in August 2021 (versus 2.9% of workers in the overall economy). Learn more


Want to know how the labor shortage impacts a specific market? Contact us today to see if we're analyzing labor shortages in your market — or scope out a Custom Research project on any category.