Soundbites: March/April 2022

How would you sort out the skills crises and shortages in the UK?

Wayne Brophy

Managing director, Cast UK

“Firstly, employers and companies should embrace a more inclusive, skills-based approach to hiring, rather than focusing on qualifications. Our method is to concentrate on competencies that can be transferred from other industries. Secondly, accelerated training schemes are required to develop skills and retrain people. Thirdly, we should encourage schools to produce more students who are better equipped to go out into the world of work – at the same time as showcasing certain sectors that are struggling to attract employees, such as logistics or supply chain.”

Neil Dickins

Founder/director, IC Resources and UKESF (UK Electronics Skills Foundation) board member

“In the short term, I would abolish the ‘NHS tax’ for work permit employees. It’s costly to employers (especially start-ups) and it sends a ‘second class citizen’ message to employees. Let’s make the UK competitive and open for business. Invest in electronics/computer science training for teachers and provide hands-on development kits for students. In the longer term, teachers need to be paid a decent wage – especially nursery teachers, who are critical to long-term societal health. Reduce admin pressure on teachers, allowing them to run extracurricular activities/clubs (and have a life!).”

Jeremy Pierce

Managing director, Silven Recruitment

“First, I’d increase the number of people eligible to work in the UK by rejoining the EU and embracing freedom of movement. I also think it’s important to invest in bursaries and scholarships, enabling the brightest STEM minds to work in green technology so we can build that sector. Then, I’d incentivise organisations allied to that area (such as vegan companies) to invest in the UK. Finally, I’d provide funding or tax breaks to businesses to invest in automation, either through CAPEX or software.”

Image credit | Shutterstock


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