31 Jul 2019
A new report suggests that while demand for workers has remained strong, some firms are finding it a challenge to recruit top talent.
The study by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) and Totaljobs revealed that the proportion of employers looking to recruit has risen, but two-thirds are struggling to find the right candidates to fill vacant roles.
BCC surveyed more than 6,500 organisations for its latest Quarterly Recruitment Outlook, and three out of five (60%) said they had tried to recruit more staff in the second quarter of 2019, compared to 53% in the first quarter of the year.
The number of businesses reporting difficulties in hiring the right staff was down from 73% earlier this year to 64%. However, that figure is still high compared to hiring levels in previous years.
According to the report, despite the ongoing uncertainty over Brexit and sluggish economic growth, the UK jobs market is showing resilience. However, it highlighted that the current scale of labour shortages is not sustainable in the long-term.
Figures from the Office of National Statistics show that the employment rate rose slightly in the three months to May, while the unemployment rate remained low. Meanwhile, recent surveys have revealed a decline in business optimism.
The solution to these labour shortages, the BCC report suggests, is for the government to reform the skills development system. That would mean coming up with a long-term plan to meet employers’ skills needs, as well as an efficient, cost-effective means of recruiting workers from overseas.
Claire Walker, co-executive director at the BCC, said: “The solution to plugging the UK’s skills gap in the long-term includes reforming the skills education and training system, and giving it time to bed in.”
She continued: “We look forward to working with the new administration to get the system working better for everyone and ensuring firms can access the skills they need to improve growth and productivity.”
Walker also highlighted that employers need more clarity over how they would manage their workforce requirements after 31st October when the UK is scheduled to leave the EU.
Patrick Wehrmann, CEO of Totaljobs explained the report’s findings. “As a consequence of not only an increasing national living and minimum wage, but also a continued challenge to recruit, it is telling that Q2 2019 saw the fastest rise in real-wage growth in over three years, outpacing inflation and expert predictions.”
Obviously there is now an opportunity for people possessing in-demand skills to further their careers and, as Wehrmann puts it, “realise their earning potential”.
But in order to attract the best candidates, you must have a clear idea of your USPs and what makes your company stand out from the crowd. When was the last time you refreshed your employer value proposition (EVP)? Perhaps you’ve never defined it? Here at Stopgap, we can help you shape your EVP in order to attract the skills you need for 2019 and beyond. Why not talk to the team today?
Employment rate rose slightly in the three months to May, while the unemployment rate remained low