UK businesses and universities are today voicing serious concerns that we are facing a skills mismatch which is standing in the way of the nation’s recovery. This comes as new Office for National Statistics (ONS) statistics released this morning show the number of vacancies has risen above one million for the first time ever.
“While today’s labour market statistics are largely cause for optimism, policymakers must not become complacent about the recovery. As was the case last month, today’s statistics show a disproportionately high number of vacancies, alongside large numbers of people still furloughed and unemployed. There are worrying signs that employers across a multitude of sectors are currently facing difficulty in hiring. Businesses and higher education providers are therefore voicing serious concerns that we are facing a skills mismatch.”
“The furlough scheme has played a critical part in keeping people in jobs, and as it draws to an end, we should be ready to cope with a fallout. We know that young people, in particular, have been most affected by lengthy periods of unemployment. To help cope with this, we are urging the Government to restore a national labour market intelligence body, to replace the now-dissolved UK Commission for Employment and Skills. This body will be vital in order for businesses, universities and the Government alike, to better understand the labour market needs. It will allow universities to produce the highly-skilled, adaptable workforce businesses need, to help the nation’s post-pandemic recovery.”