Labor resources: concept, formation, age, ways to improve the efficiency of use

Labor resources: concept, formation, age, ways to improve the efficiency of use
Labor resources: concept, formation, age, ways to improve the efficiency of use

The concept of "labor resources" is rather vague and vague. It was introduced by Academician Stanislav Strumilin in 1922. Usually, this term is understood as the part of the population of the country that can be engaged in socially useful work. The labor force includes both those who are already working somewhere and the unemployed, who theoretically could do something. The formation of labor resources is a complex and multifaceted process.

workforce and labor market

Abroad, they use a more socially oriented concept - human resources. Thus, the concept of "labor resources" came to us from the Soviet past, it corresponds to the spirit of collectivism and is not very suitable for modern realities.

Who belongs to the workforce?

The labor force includes all the economically active population, and thisregardless of age groups. It includes officially employed citizens, individual entrepreneurs, self-employed, as well as citizens in military service. Therefore, when considering the structure of labor resources, they distinguish between active (workers of various professions) and passive (those who are unemployed, but could work under suitable conditions) categories. The graph shows the dynamics of the number of citizens of working age in Russia.

Dynamics of the population of working age

The size of labor resources is largely related to the norms of the current legislation. Even if a person can potentially work, but has an age beyond the accepted limits of working age, and at the same time he is not employed in labor activity, then he will not be considered a labor resource. Working age limits vary widely across countries. Thus, in some underdeveloped countries of Africa, child labor is considered quite normal, although in general the world is recognized as unacceptable.

Replenishment of labor resources occurs at the expense of young people reaching working age, immigrants from other countries, the military, dismissed from the armed forces. Quantitatively, labor resources are measured by the number of people, and not by the total amount of work that all able-bodied citizens can perform per unit of time. This is due to the fact that it is impossible to quantify such a volume. Information about the availability of labor resources, in this regard, cannot be accurate.

assessment of laborresources

Nevertheless, the entire working-age population can be to some extent decomposed into categories related to the ability to perform a particular job. To do this, use such indicators as the average number of employees, the proportion of employees with higher and secondary specialized education, the staff turnover rate, the proportion of employees engaged in a certain type of labor activity, the average length of service, etc.

Who is not in the workforce?

Not all people of working age will do any work. Those who will not work under existing conditions are classified as economically inactive population. First of all, these are non-working pensioners, children, teenagers. In addition to them, this category includes people with disabilities, as well as:

  • Those who work for themselves (do housework).
  • Those who decide to get a full-time higher education and therefore do not have time to work.
  • Persons who do not want to work for reasons of conviction (e.g. religious) or independent source of livelihood (e.g. children of we althy parents), etc.
  • Desperate unemployed.
  • Homeless, beggars, alcoholics, etc.

Employed and unemployed

All this is the economically active population, which can be divided into officially employed and unemployed. The unemployed do not work in an official job, but can earn extra money somewhere privately. In this case, they are called self-employed. They also form part of the country's labor force.

Reasons whya person can not find a job, may be different. It often happens that a person does not have enough education and / or qualifications to get a good (by the standards of the country) job, and one where qualifications are not required may be too low paid and / or difficult. In this case, he will look for other ways to earn money. Another reason for refusing to work officially may be the difficulty of adapting to the team. In other cases, the reason may be the great remoteness of places of work from the place of residence of a person. Sometimes it also happens that there may not be a suitable job at all.

Average annual number of employees

Estimating workforce is quite complex. The average number of employees for a period of 1 year is calculated as the sum of the average numbers for each month, divided by the number 12. The average monthly number of employees is determined in a similar way.

labor resources

They also use the concept of the average annual number of employees, which is defined as the ratio of the amount of time worked per year by all employees to the annual fund of working time.

Gender and age structure and labor force

The amount of work that the inhabitants of the country can produce depends on the sex and age structure of the population. With a high birth rate, the population of younger age groups predominates, which means that the number of labor resources is relatively reduced. With a low birth rate, the proportion of people over working age is increased, which leads to the same result.

Women tend to produceless work than men, so the predominance of females in the population also reduces the labor potential of the country.

When assessing labor resources, the division of all citizens of the country into 3 categories is often used: people of working age, people younger than working age and people older than working age. A two-group classification is less commonly used: persons of working age and persons older than working age. The most rarely used is a detailed classification of the components of the labor force, which includes the following age groups: 60 - 70 years old, 55 - 59 years old, 50 - 54 years old, 45 - 49 years old, 40 - 44, 35 - 39, 30 - 34, 25 - 29, 20-24 and 16-19.

The Importance of Human Resources

Traditionally, the volume of labor resources, determined by the number of able-bodied citizens, is an important factor in the country's economic well-being. For this reason, many countries are trying to combat the so-called population aging effect, which consists in increasing the proportion of the population older than working age. Although boosting the birth rate is a potentially negative factor that can lead to overcrowding and food problems, this old-fashioned method is still being used by the authorities in China and other countries in order to increase the share of the working-age population in the future, that is, accelerate the reproduction of labor resources.

Another way is to change the legislation aimed at raising the retirement age, which formally gives an increase in the proportion of able-bodied citizens. Russian authoritiesjustify the need to raise the retirement age by the lack of labor resources in the country due to the high proportion of people older than working age. However, against the background of significant unemployment and massive layoffs, this argument does not look convincing.

Now the average age of the working-age population in Russia is 39.7 years.

From quantity to quality

Scientific and technological progress, the spread of automation and the growth of labor productivity lead to the fact that the number of workers necessary for production is constantly decreasing. In Western countries, even special efforts are being made to maintain and increase the number of jobs in order to ensure employment of the population in the conditions of technological progress. Thus, if the world needs fewer and fewer workers, then the meaning of various manipulations aimed at increasing the number of people of working age is generally incomprehensible and is a sign of conservative thinking.

What is included in the workforce structure?

Not all people can do the same job equally effectively. Labor productivity and its quality in a particular type of activity are different for everyone. Therefore, to characterize labor resources, their structure is considered, which includes 9 categories. The most important are: age, gender, qualifications, education, occupation.

Age plays a big role in employment. So, at the age of 20 it will be problematic to get a job as a director, manager, deputy, etc. Such work requires the adoption of balanceddecisions, life experience, and often previous career progression. No one will take top leadership positions at that age. However, if we are talking about working as a loader, waiter, dishwasher, stuntman or athlete, then the young will have undoubted advantages.

Gender is pretty important too. One job is easier for a woman to do, another for a man. For example, when applying for a job as a loader or miner, a man will be more likely to get such a position. If you get a job in a clothing store or a kindergarten teacher, then here the employer will give preference to a woman. In general, the opportunities for getting a job are higher for men, since they are not burdened with raising children, pregnancy, childbirth, and so on. Men are more emotionally stable, which gives them advantages when driving a car, for example.

formation of labor resources

The type and level of education, the presence or absence of academic degrees also play a significant role in choosing a candidate. For example, if a person has a technical education, then it will be easier for him to get a job as an engineer, and if he has a scientific education, then as a teacher or scientist. An interview may be conducted to clarify the level of knowledge.

Another factor is the candidate's place of residence. The closer a person lives to their place of work, the more likely they are to be accepted. After all, it is much easier for an employer to manage an employee if he is nearby, moreover, this reduces the likelihood of being late.

Labor and labor market

The labor market isone of the forms of economic relations, the basis of which is the purchase and sale of labor. As with any market, the most important components of the labor market are supply and demand. The employee offers his labor force, and the employer buys it. Payment is made through the payment of wages, bonuses and so on.

working age

The labor market and labor resources are an important element of the socio-economic policy of the state, and the quality of life of most citizens directly depends on their condition. The labor market is an indispensable feature of capitalism and is absent from the feudal relationships that were common in the historical past.

Ways to improve the efficiency of the use of labor resources

This economic task is closely related to the solution of acute social problems. First of all, it is important to create a positive motivation for employees, which will become an incentive to do more work. Many employers now prefer to increase the workload of employees or workers, while the level of wages is quite low. As a result, there is an outflow of labor resources, including through the relocation of professional workers to other countries where working conditions are much better. The he alth of workers also suffers, chronic fatigue occurs. All this reduces labor productivity.

Recreation and training

It is necessary to provide full-fledged conditions for recreation, including free issuance of vouchers to sanatoriums and other places of recreation.Restoring the he alth and strength of an employee is an indispensable condition for increasing his workforce.

Another area of ​​efficiency and productivity growth is the retraining of personnel, training in new methods, programs, introduction to new technologies. In many cases, it is important that an individual approach is applied to each employee, allowing him to fully reveal his individual skills. It is important that everyone does the work that best suits their abilities and interests.

ways to improve the efficiency of the use of labor resources

Disease prevention

To increase labor efficiency, measures to prevent diseases and improve the he alth of workers are also important. Among them, the fight against smoking, improving the ventilation system, maintaining an optimal microclimate in the room, teaching the basics of a he althy lifestyle; equipment of a bathhouse, a gym, sports facilities at the place of work; a he althy menu including fruits, vegetables, cereals, green tea, tomato juice, fish, protein foods, etc.

The workplace should have a favorable visual environment, greenery, amenities.


Thus, the concept of "labor resources" is rather outdated, and its use indicates a dismissive attitude towards a person as a person. It came to us from Soviet times. Abroad, the concept of "human resources" is used, which implies great concern for a person and his creative potential. And if the authoritiesoperate with the concept of "labor resources", then their attitude towards the population is likely to be formal and unfriendly.

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