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How Labour Shortages Are Holding Back UK Businesses

It's threatening economic growth too ...


Posted by Roger Eddowes on 09/11/2023 @ 8:00AM

In recent years, the UK has been experiencing a worrying trend of labour shortages across various industries. This is not a new issue, but the situation has become more dire in recent times ...

The labour shortage crisis in the UK is holding back businesses and threatening economic growth!

The labour shortage crisis in the UK is holding back businesses and threatening economic growth!

created by dall-e / open ai

With more than a third of businesses reporting that they are struggling to find suitable employees to fill crucial roles, this has caused a significant roadblock for businesses, hindering their ability to grow and thrive in a competitive market. So, what exactly is causing this labour shortage crisis?

"One of the main factors is the skills gap!"

With the rapid advancements in technology and a constantly evolving job market, there is a growing mismatch between the skills that employers are looking for and the skills that job seekers possess. This has resulted in a shortage of workers with the necessary qualifications and experience to meet the demands of the job market.

Another contributing factor is the ageing population in the UK. As the baby boomer generation reaches retirement age, there is a decline in the number of skilled workers available to fill their roles. This has created a significant gap in the workforce, especially in industries that require highly skilled and experienced professionals.

Furthermore, the uncertainty following Brexit has also played a role in the labour shortage crisis. With many EU citizens leaving the UK and a decrease in the number of immigrants entering the country, there has been a significant decline in the number of foreign workers available to fill roles in various industries such as the healthcare and hospitality industries.

The consequences are far-reaching and have a significant impact on businesses of all sizes. For starters, the inability to find qualified employees means that businesses are unable to operate at full capacity, leading to a decrease in productivity and profitability. SMEs are feeling this the most as they do not have the resources to train and upskill employees.

"Moreover, the labour shortage has also resulted
in a rise in staff turnover rates!"

With fewer employees available, companies are facing fierce competition to attract and retain top talent. This has led to employees job-hopping in search of better opportunities and higher pay, resulting in a higher turnover rate and increased costs for businesses.

Additionally, existing employees are often forced to take on extra responsibilities to compensate for the lack of skilled workers. This has caused employee burnout and decreased job satisfaction, leading to higher rates of absenteeism and decreased morale within the workforce.

The impact of the labour shortage is having a significant effect on the country's economic growth overall. As businesses struggle to find qualified employees, their own growth and expansion plans are put on hold. This, in turn, has a ripple effect on the larger economy, causing a slowdown in economic growth and hindering the country's overall competitiveness in the global market.

So, what can businesses do to overcome this labour shortage crisis? The first step is to address the skills gap by investing in training and upskilling programs for existing employees. This not only helps bridge the skills gap, but also boosts employee morale and job satisfaction!

Another solution is to tap into new talent pools. Instead of relying solely on traditional recruitment methods, businesses can expand their search to include underrepresented groups, such as women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities. This not only provides opportunities for a diverse workforce, but also helps fill the labour gap.

Businesses can also consider offering competitive wages and benefits to attract and retain top talent. This may require some adjustments in budgets and some cost-cutting measures. Still, in the long run, it will prove to be a worthy investment in a highly competitive job market.

Finally, the government also has a crucial role to play in addressing the labour shortage crisis. They can work towards creating policies that support skills development and immigration policies that help fill the gap in the workforce.

"The labour shortage crisis in the UK is holding back businesses and threatening economic growth!"

I feel it is essential for businesses to proactively address this issue by investing in training programs, tapping into new talent pools, and offering competitive wages and benefits. The government must also play a role in finding solutions to this crisis.

It's the only way to ensure the future success of businesses in the UK.

Until next time ...

Business Godparent


Would you like to know more?

If anything I've written in this blog post resonates with you and you'd like to discover more about the labour shortage and how you can attract and retain the best staff, it may be a great idea to call me on 01908 774320 and let's see how I can help.

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About Roger Eddowes ...


Roger trained at Edward Thomas Peirson & Sons in Market Harborough before working at Hartwell & Co, followed by Chancery, as a partner. He started Essendon Accounts and Tax with Helen Beaumont in 2014 as a general practitioner with a hands-on approach.

Roger loves getting his hands dirty, working with emerging, small-to-medium and family businesses to ensure they receive the best possible accountancy advice. Roger utilises an extensive network of business contacts to leverage the best guidance and practical solutions.