Risk of skilled-worker shortage

In danger: Objectives
of the “Ampel-Koalition”

A short new analysis shows to what extent the shortage of skilled workers threatens the central political projects of the Federal Government.

Germany is currently experiencing a shortage of 1.7 million workers (IAB). Labour, however, plays a prominent role in the goals of the “Ampel-Koalition” enshrined in the coalition agreement.

To give an example, for the transition to mobility by rail, passenger transport performance is to be doubled. But the workforce of drivers for buses and trams alone will shrink by 25 percent over the next few years due to retirement and a lack of young workforce.

In a new investigation, Prognos subjected five goals of the coalition agreement to a risk assessment, to find out how the shortage of skilled workers threatens the key political plans of the “Ampel-Koalition”.

For a brief analysis (PDF in German)

„Even with the best financial resources, the goals of the Federal Government are at risk.“
Head of Economics at Prognos
Dr Oliver Ehrentraut
Dr. Oliver Ehrentraut
Prognos AG/FOTOS Koroll

Measurable goals of the Federal Government

The brief analysis examines five areas, which are largely “quantitatively” formulated in the coalition agreement and can be examined because they provide a specific time horizon and/or a fixed target value:

  • The road mobility transition – by 2030, at least 15 million purely electric cars are to be registered in Germany.
  • The mobility transition for rail – the rail system is to double transport performance in passenger transport.
  • The energy transition, wind power and solar energy – by 2030, offshore wind power is to be expanded to 30 GW and solar energy to 200 GW.
  • Housing construction – every year, 400,000 new apartments are to be built, of which 25 percent are publicly funded.
  • Childcare – the legal right to full-day care and a space in a day-care centre is to be achieved nationwide. At the same time, the aim is to improve the care situation.

A shortage of skilled workers threatens the achievement of these goals

The brief analysis shows that the shortage of skilled workers represents a significant risk in all areas examined. There are no simple solutions, through more work or more money. A rethink is necessary: “Career choice and working hours cannot be prescribed by society; new roles and better working conditions require long-term efforts,” says Oliver Ehrentraut, project manager for the short analysis.


Prognos used official statistics and publicly available information for the short analysis, as well as Prognos’ own skilled labour model, proven over the course of many years.    
The objectives of the coalition agreement are assessed in the context of the current labour market situation and the potential shortage of skilled workers in the relevant professional groups.
Each objective goes through the traffic-light check. The relevant occupations were examined on the basis of the following central bottleneck indicators:

  • Changes in labour supply between 2021 and 2030
  • Jobseeker-job ratio
  • Unemployment rate
  • Average vacancy time in days

Finally, the Prognos labour market experts analyse the current and future personnel situation and provide a comprehensive qualitative assessment:

  • If the traffic light for skilled workers is set to “green,” the goal can be reached, at least from a “personnel” perspective.
  • If the traffic light is set to “yellow,” there are doubts as to whether the corresponding goal can be achieved.
  • A red light indicates that the shortage of workers and skilled workers should be considered a central risk factor in the implementation of the respective target.


Brief analysis of risk of shortage of skilled workers (PDF in German)


Project team: Dr Oliver Ehrentraut (Project Manager), Markus Hoch, Gwendolyn Huschik, Philipp Anton Kreuzer



Contact person for press inquiries:
Eike Schrimm
Speaker Press Work
Phone: +49 30 58 70 89 118
Mobile: + 49 151 684 052 30
E-mail: presse@prognos.com

Contact person for content inquiries:
Dr Oliver Ehrentraut
Head of the Economics Department
Phone: +49 761 76 61 164 801
E-mail: oliver.ehrentraut@prognos.com

Last update: 26.5.2023

Feel free to contact us.

Dr Oliver Ehrentraut

Partner, Director, Head of Economics Division

+49 761 76 61 164 801

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