Non-EU Workers in Maltese Companies
In a recent Eurobarometer survey focusing on skills shortages and recruitment in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), it was revealed that a significant quarter of Maltese businesses have been hiring workers from outside the European Union (EU). This places Maltese companies as the third most likely in the EU to employ non-EU workers, according to the findings.
The survey encompassed 252 Maltese SMEs, shedding light on various employment patterns within these businesses. Specifically, it highlighted that 16% of Maltese companies exclusively employ non-EU workers in person, while 3% rely solely on remote workers from outside the EU. Additionally, 6% of Maltese SMEs hire both in-person and online non-EU workers.
These statistics stand out when compared to the broader EU landscape, where the survey covered 12,909 SMEs across all member states. It was found that 14% of EU-based SMEs employ foreign workers from outside the EU. The proportions of companies engaging non-EU workers vary significantly, with Portugal at 30%, Ireland at 28%, and at the lower end, Bulgaria at 3% and Hungary at 2%.
An overwhelming 87% of Maltese companies reported experiencing skills shortages. These shortages manifested in several ways, including applicants lacking the required skills or there being too few or no applicants for specific job roles. The roles that posed the greatest recruitment challenges included managers, administrators, skilled workers, and manual laborers. Notably, 50% of Maltese companies faced difficulties in recruiting professionals and technicians, while 41% encountered hurdles in hiring manual laborers and administrators.
It is essential to highlight that Malta was not unique in grappling with the difficulty of recruiting skilled workers, as the survey indicated that this challenge was widespread across the EU. The percentages varied, ranging from 54% in Cyprus to 56% in Sweden and Denmark, and peaking at 88% in Austria.
When asked about their strategies for addressing these skills shortages, 47% of Maltese respondents expressed their willingness to invest more in training. This approach was also favored by over 40% of respondents in the Netherlands (44%), Italy (47%), and Ireland (49%). In contrast, only 22% of respondents in Denmark leaned toward investing more in training.
Interestingly, 21% of Maltese companies, as opposed to 32% of companies in other EU countries, considered increasing financial benefits as a means to attract more workers. Furthermore, 26% of Maltese businesses would explore automation solutions, while 14% would consider lowering their hiring standards to address recruitment challenges.
A significant number of Maltese businesses, totaling 44%, believed that simplifying procedures for hiring non-EU workers could aid in recruiting staff with the necessary skills. This sentiment was echoed by 38% of SMEs across all EU member states. A majority of respondents, 59%, believed that improved collaboration with public employment services represented the most effective measure to tackle skill shortages.
What does the Eurobarometer survey reveal about Maltese businesses and non-EU workers?
The survey indicates that a quarter of Maltese businesses employ workers from outside the EU, making Maltese companies the third most likely in the EU to hire non-EU workers.
What are the key employment patterns identified in Maltese SMEs in the survey?
The survey highlights that 16% of Maltese companies exclusively employ non-EU workers in person, 3% rely solely on remote workers from outside the EU, and 6% hire both in-person and online non-EU workers.
What percentage of Maltese businesses reported experiencing skills shortages?
An overwhelming 87% of Maltese companies reported facing skills shortages in their recruitment processes.
How do Maltese businesses plan to address skills shortages according to the survey?
In response to skills shortages, 47% of Maltese respondents expressed their willingness to invest more in training. This approach was also favored by respondents in other EU countries.
What strategies are Maltese businesses considering to attract more workers, as per the survey?
The survey indicates that 21% of Maltese companies considered increasing financial benefits, 26% would explore automation, and 14% would consider lowering their hiring standards to address recruitment challenges.