Government and the Skills gap

How are the gov planning on filling the skills gap?

A growing skills gap is leaving many employers with a shortage of talent, but what will the government do to help solve this predicament for businesses?

Businesses all over the UK are being plagued by a shortfall in skills among their employees. This is the result of their most experienced professionals leaving the company and a struggle to get young people with the right skills into the industry. It has fast become what we know as ‘the skills gap’.

But, with the problem growing for many, is there anything that can be done to resolve the growing skills gap?

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) hosted an education summit #bcceducation, bringing together leading politicians, businesses, and industry experts.

Speaking at the event, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn highlighted the importance of having a programme of life-long training for building a high skills economy.

He added that the Conservatives had led a decade of “economic failure” and that his party would put investment in education first to ensure young people get the skills they need to succeed.

“We have an explosion of low-paid, insecure jobs. We’ve had a period of lost wage growth and falling real terms pay that the Institute of Fiscal Studies describes as ‘completely unprecedented,” Mr Corbyn added in his keynote speech.

The Labour Leader focused on plans in his party manifesto to introduce a National Education Service, which would provide free lifelong education and training to everyone in the country. Businesses would have to pay slightly higher taxes to allow for this to happen, but it would reward then in the long run, Mr Corbyn said.

“Our National Education Service will be the key institution of fairness and prosperity for the 21st Century, just as the NHS transformed people’s prospects in the 20th Century,” he added.

Mr Corbyn isn’t the only person to criticise the government’s current attitude to education.

In the run-up to the Snap Election, the Prime Minister Theresa May talked about a number of cuts that would have to be made to schools, including getting rid of free school lunches and potential redundancies for teachers.

In the first Conservative manifesto released ahead of the election, it was estimated that the proposed cuts would affect 9,000 schools, causing many people – including MPs – to worry that education was not a priority for the party. The negative attention of this caused the Tories to pledge that ‘no school would lose out’ under its proposed new funding formula to try and ease concerns.

The government has announced that it will be launching initiatives such as the Cyber Schools Programme and investing in apprenticeships to help address future skills shortages but many feel unsure about whether the Prime Minister stands on education, having backtracked on key issues.

Is your business suffering from a skills gap? If you are hiring, consider joining us for our next Digital Job Fair in Leeds. Drop us a line today to be first in line to exhibit and attract talent in the North.