Businesses bemoan brain drain

A shortage in skilled workers could impede growth, finds a survey of UK employers.


A shortage in skilled workers could impede growth, finds a survey of UK employers.

A shortage in skilled workers could impede growth, finds a survey of UK employers.

Some 51 per cent of employers are worried they will not be able to fill posts requiring degree-level skills when the economy improves, while 32 per cent predict a dearth of candidates with A levels or equivalent qualifications, according to research from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

Almost half of all respondents say they are already experiencing difficulties recruiting staff for science and technology-related positions, while nearly a third expect the need for lower skilled workers to decrease.

Richard Lambert, director general at the CBI, says: ‘As we move further into recovery and businesses plan for growth, the demand for people with high-quality skills and qualifications will intensify.’

James Callander, managing director of recruitment company Fresh Minds, says: ‘SMEs will need to compete in the market for skilled workers when the upturn arrives. In order to get the right recruits, they should concentrate on conveying the benefits of working for a smaller firm as well as being creative in their advertising in order to stand out from their larger competitors.’

Of the 694 employers surveyed, 42 per cent regard business studies A level as the most desirable in a candidate, followed by maths (21 per cent) and english (13 per cent). The least useful were seen as psychology (3 per cent) and sociology (1 per cent).

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