An already difficult recruiting situation to fill jobs with skills in short supply will intensify for upper management as boomers leave. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Senior management is soon going to be in a world of hurt — boomers retiring in waves are leaving holes at the top that will have to be filled.

A report in Raconteur finds that, with approximately 10,000 boomers retiring every day in the U.S., and similarly substantial numbers retiring in other countries, along with a corresponding drop in the working population, there’s going to be a dearth of talent available to fill the top slots as senior managers retire.

The report points out that an already difficult recruiting situation to fill jobs with skills in short supply will intensify as boomers leave the field; it “will inevitably compound a progressively worsening skills crisis across many sectors, but nowhere more than at the senior management level.”

And fields where boomers dominate the employee base will feel the squeeze most.

“Major shortages in the medical profession are already appearing,” the report quotes Jeremy Tipper, director at talent acquisition and management services provider Alexander Mann Solutions, saying. Tipper adds, “[A]nd, while it’s slightly less apparent in engineering right now, it’s certainly coming.”

And GenXers won’t be happy about this, either—they’re likely to be passed over for a lot of leadership positions as millennials get fast-tracked through management development.

That, says the report, is so they’re prepped to take over in fields such as “IT and the creative industries, which are generally younger and rely less on academic knowledge and experience than the medical and engineering worlds.”

Those other fields? Employers are increasingly offering boomers enticements not to retire, or at least not completely, with flexible working, freelance or consultancy options on offer.

They’re also having discussions about those boomers providing mentorship to younger workers who aren’t sufficiently experienced to take over—yet.

The report quotes Tom Blower, director of leadership development consultancy Black Isle Europe, saying, “It’s hard on generation X who are waiting for a tap on the shoulder to say ‘it’s your turn for promotion as you’re next in line.’ But if the idea of people potential takes root, which it is in some areas, it’s not necessarily going to be about experience, but about who will be the most effective future leaders in a world undergoing widespread digital disruption.”