M. Hasanein, J. Ababtain, M. Ferrer

Alfaisal University (SAUDI ARABIA)
There is and has been an understandable focus on reaching full employment for Saudi nationals over the recent past. There are far too many Saudis who have talents and abilities to work in productive jobs, but have no employment position in which they can use their talents and skills. There are different reasons for this. A main reason is that there is a huge lack of Saudis who have the needed training and experience to perform in certain job market sectors where experience is essential. Expatriate workers from overseas locations have traditionally filled these positions. Another reason is that Saudis avoid certain kinds of positions such as "blue collar" jobs that are willingly occupied by foreign workers who are pleased to perform these needed services.

The Saudi Government, through the Ministry of Labor, has the task of correcting the job mix in Saudi Arabia, and putting unemployed Saudis into productive jobs. This is a process that takes time along with the cooperation of both the public and private sectors. This project looks at the situation of different industry sectors, and how they are involved with this process of avoiding and developing awareness of skill gaps and the progress that they have made in understanding the impact on performance. Descriptive statistics will be used to profile the research issues and inferential statistics will be used to test the conceptual model.

Preliminary findings suggest that the major significant positions that have skill gap in most organization in Saudi Arabia are the production employees in Saudi organizations and the reason behind that is the lack of training for the employees in the production area in the company because time allocated to training has suffered because of work pressures. On the other hand the lowest position that is experiencing a skill gap in Saudi organizations are the trade employees This may designate that they are giving better training session in organizations than the production workers.
Initial findings also indicate that Saudi organizations try to maintain their market share regardless of the skill gap in their organizations.