The study showed that one in six businesses had experienced problems in securing the right employees this year. 2007 was the last time that recruitment difficulties were at a similar proportion.
The hardest sector to find the right people was the engineering sector. Other affected sectors were management, sales representatives, technicians and IT.
In the survey the most common factor highlighted was a lack of training and skills among applicants. So much so that almost a half of UK employers look outside their local region in order to dip into wider pools of labour talent.
Mark Cahill, managing director at Manpower, said: "Britain is facing a serious talent shortage in certain sectors at a time when unemployment is actually rising. Part of the reason we continue to see the same professions feature in the list every year is that the jobs have structurally changed, as have the skills required, but training in these professions has yet to catch up.
"The recession, and now this slow recovery, has made the talent mismatch in the UK even more stark. Many organisations that have previously cut their headcounts are now finding that they need to increase their workforce in an increasingly talent-hungry market. Though the UK suffers less than other countries, there is no doubt that globally we are heading towards an employability crisis."