3.3 Skills forecasting
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The demand for future jobs in enterprises is estimated by the Central Statistical Office of Poland (GUS). Every year, it prepares a publication on the basis of the results of a labour demand survey. Since 2007, the survey has been conducted using the representative method, on a quarterly basis, and includes national economic operators employing 1 or more persons. Until 2007, the survey included only operators with a workforce of 10 or more.
The information obtained from the survey of enterprises includes: realised and unrealised demand, i.e. jobs filled and job vacancies by occupation; data on the number of newly created and liquidated jobs in the reporting period by workplace characteristics, namely spatial distribution, ownership sector, type of activity, and size.
The basic legal act introducing labour demand surveys in the European Union is Regulation (EC) No 453/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2008 regarding quarterly statistics on job vacancies within the Union.
Another source of information are employment forecasts, which use different data sources.
The Ministry of Family, Labour and Social Policy (currently Ministry of Family and Social Policy) has implemented a monitoring system for surplus and deficit occupations. In accordance with the provisions of the Act of 20 April 2004 on promotion of employment and labour market institutions (Article 8(1)(3) and Article 9(1)(9)), the preparation of labour market analyses, including monitoring of deficit and surplus occupations, is one of the tasks of provincial governments and district governments in the field of labour market policy.
The main source of information is data on the registered unemployed and job offers by occupation and specialisation originating from the information systems used in Employment Offices. This is supplemented by data from the monitoring of job offers on the Internet conducted by provincial Employment Offices and other sources.
Since 2015 an important forecasting mechanism is provided by the Occupational Barometer - a one-year forecast of situation in occupations. The Barometer qualifies jobs into three groups: deficit, balance and surplus.
Deficit occupations are those in which it should not be difficult to find a job in the coming year since the demand from employers will be high, combined with a low supply of labour willing to take up employment and having the right qualifications,
Balanced occupations are those in which the number of vacancies will be close to the number of people capable of and interested in taking up employment in the occupation concerned (the supply and demand sides will be balanced),
Surplus occupations are those in which it might be more difficult to find a job because of the low demand and numerous candidates willing to take up employment and meeting the employers’ requirements.
Barometer shows demand for occupations for each county. It is also available at regional level.
Information on deficit, balanced and surplus occupations in Poland is available on the website of the Ministry of Family and Social Policy. The results of monitoring for provinces and districts are available on the websites of the relevant Employment Offices.
An additional source of information about the demand among employers as well as qualifications and skills requirements is the research conducted by various institutions, including the Educational Research Institute (Instytut Badań Edukacyjnych- IBE), Manpower, Randstad.
An EU-funded project titled "Forecasting System for the Polish Labor Market" is underway to implement an innovative method for forecasting labor demand, labor supply and the demand-supply gap, and to develop a new tool for determining detailed forecasts for the labor market in the 2050 horizon.
In addition, starting in 2019, the minister in charge of education and upbringing announces a forecast of labor demand in vocational training occupations in the national and provincial labor markets. The document contains an alphabetically arranged list of branch education professions for which, due to their importance for the development of the state, a particularly significant, as well as moderate, demand for workers in the national labor market is forecast. Based on it, it is possible to shape the offer of industry education in accordance with the needs of the national and provincial market.
According to research on the state of human capital in Poland (Social Diagnosis, Analysis of Qualifications and Key Competences for Increasing the Opportunities of Graduates in the Labour Market), there is a need for the development of the following skills, required to implement the government Strategy for Responsible Development until 2020 (with a forecast up to 2030).
Transversal skills – to enable playing of social and occupational roles/functions in different contexts, regardless of sector/industry or occupation, which are used in different situations (such as language skills, communication skills or entrepreneurship).
Digital skills – which are essential for functioning in today’s world, regardless of age or physical fitness, and enable reading digital content and evaluating its credibility, using it in daily life, and expanding the demand base for e-services provided by public and business entities.
Professional skills – lack of qualified staff may prevent or hinder the economic development proposed in the Strategy.
Information from forecasts and studies is available in publications and on the websites of the relevant institutions preparing them.
The adopted government document Human Capital Development Strategy until 2030 (2020) assumes, among others, the following objectives: increasing the level of competences and qualifications of citizens, including digital ones, and increasing and improving the use of human capital potential on the labour market. This is to be achieved, among other things, by launching the Integrated Qualifications Register (ZRK) portal. It is a public register that gathers the most important information about all qualifications included in the Integrated Qualifications System, regardless of other registers existing in Poland. The objective of the ZRK is to support the implementation of the lifelong learning idea by facilitating access to information about qualifications of the highest quality that can be obtained. Each qualification included in this register is assigned a level in the Polish Qualification Framework and the European Qualification Framework.
Information from employment forecasts and research is used in government documents concerning, among other things, the national development, education and employment policies.
At provincial and district level, this information is used in documents related to regional and local development strategies, including in the planning of the directions of education in upper secondary education.
Implementation of the results of forecasts and analyses in formal education at national, regional and local level has so far failed to produce the intended outcomes.
Conclusions based on studies of employers indicate that in Poland there is a gap between the skills of employees and the needs of the economy and the labour market, that schools do not educate at the level expected by employers, nor does the content of the curriculum meet expectations. Furthermore, the offer for retraining adults (including those with the lowest level of basic skills) is not sufficiently attractive and flexible.
Studies by the Central Statistical Office Young People on the Labour Market 2016 (Osoby młode na rynku pracy - 2016) regarding the situation of young people in the labour market show that the extent to which one’s educational background is utilised in the workplace depends on the occupational group. While among specialists more than 70% of the respondents indicated that they found their education highly useful in their professional work, the remaining groups achieved significantly lower results.
Development Services Database. The Polish Agency for Enterprise Development (PARP) launched a search engine for training services as part of a project from European funds in 2016. The purpose of the database is to connect training companies with individuals wishing to develop competencies and qualifications, and to support the market for development services.
For training offered in the base, employees of SMEs, SME entrepreneurs and individuals in selected provinces can receive up to 80 percent funding from European funds.
The National Action Plan for Employment for 2019, envisages a number of initiatives aimed at improving occupational forecasts to serve the enhancement of education, training, professional development, such as:
- creation of a model of demand for occupations - it is intended to predict trends in demand for jobs, directions of professional education, development services, qualifications and skills for the use of public administration, entities involved in education, training and professional development, employers, employees and graduates (MEN, MC, IBE);
- Human Capital Balance - aimed at increasing knowledge on qualification and professional needs in individual economy sectors (PARP);
- maintenance and development of Competence Councils (programme and sectoral) - aimed to increase knowledge on qualification and occupational needs in particular sectors of the economy.
In 2019, the "IT Talent Development Programme for 2019-2029", initiated by the Minister of Digital Affairs, was adopted by the government. The aim of the programme is to support the development of advanced digital competences of particularly talented young people and to support the training of professionals with advanced digital skills that are in increasing demand in the labour market. The programme will be implemented between 2019 and 2029, with 10.000 pupils and students and 1.500 teachers to be supported. PLN 82.8 million from the state budget will be allocated for its implementation.
The National Employment Action Plan for 2022 announced new activities geared toward supporting the development of modern vocational education, higher education and lifelong learning. These include undertaking conceptual work to establish and support the operation of 2026. 120 industry-specific skill centers (BCUs), implementing the concept of centers of vocational excellence (within the framework of the KPO). Improving and strengthening cooperation with employers' organizations and social partners (e.g., sector skills councils) in aligning vocational education offerings with labor market needs. This will include: introduction of new professions into vocational education and additional vocational skills, modification of vocational education, and development/modification of core curricula for vocational education.