Why Is There a Shortage of Talent in the UK?

As Employment rates are at an all-time high since the 1970’s; the amount of available talent in Britain has reached a crippling low. 50% of large business’ in Britain now report extreme difficulty in recruiting– claiming the lack of applicants to be the number one cause.

With our economy on the rise, new jobs are being created at an expediential rate, and people have now filled those roles at the same speed.As a result, the UK’s unemployment rate currently stands at a commendable 3.8%. Although these stats are probably pleasing for most workers in the UK, our recent employment figures are proving to be a lot less gratifying for business owners and HR Directors. Research conducted by the The Open University estimate that a concerning £6.33 billion is now being spent every year in recruitment fees, in an attempt to resource the best available employees, and £1.49 billion of this annual bill is being spent solely on temporary staffing.

Now with the date for Brexit written firmly in everyone’s diaries; employers are bracing themselves for the already evaporating talent pool to dry up even more. With workers permits and visas soon to be restricted, and current EU resident workers unsure on their residential permanence; this epidemic is expected to spread.  

Employment Demand Vs Talent Shortage Graph (McKinsey & Company)

This scale produced by Mckinsey & Company indicates that by 2030; Teaching and educational professionals, ICT professionals and health professionals are expected to face the largest talent demand increase.  In attempt to attract the highest quality talent in industries where the choice of skilled workers is becoming increasingly sparse, employers have admitted to boosting their proposed salaries – accumulating to an additional spend of £2.16 billion. 67% of employers have had to increase their proposed salaries by £3,400 each time on average.

How to Deal with the Talent Shortage

Despite the current “recruitment crisis” there a few HR strategies that can be practiced in order to get around the lack of skilled workers available to work.

  • Upskill Current Staff

Hiring employees at a junior level and training them to develop the specific skill-set required by your organisation is one way to grow a team equipped with the knowledge and talents you need. It is definitely worth investing in a work training platform such as the one offered by TalentSpa Training.  This programme has been specifically designed to train staff and improve employee satisfaction in order to increase staff retention rates. 72% of companies are already using this method to combat current talent shortages.

  • Consider Applicants from a Different Work Background

Both hard and soft skills are easily transferrable between industry to industry. Just because a candidate isn’t routed from the precise sector for which you are recruiting – does not automatically mean that this candidate lacks the skills, experience and competency to perform the job you need.  

  • Perfect Your Company Image

You could be offering great salaries in the most beautiful locations, but if your company has a bad reputation – are people really going to want to work for you? Probably not. That’s why it’s crucial keep your current staff happy and satisfied, avoid any negative PR and to monitor your company ratings on review sites. 

So the abundance of career opportunities, lack of applicants and the introduction of Brexit are core contributors to the struggle to acquire and retain talent. Luckily, when taking the correct steps, your business can still attract the right people and continue triumph.