06 July 2017
A burgeoning skills crisis will see 12 million people either out of work or stuck in jobs below their qualification level by 2024.
This is according to a new analysis by the Learning and Work Institute on behalf of the Local Government Association, which found that the average worker will lose out on £1,176 a year as a result of the impending skills gap.
As many as 9.2 million low-skilled people will chase 3.1 million low-skilled jobs, while 12.6 million intermediate-skilled will be fighting over 10.7 million jobs by 2024, the research estimated.
But while this means 8.1 million workers will be left without a job that matches their skillset, the opposite situation is anticipated among high-skilled workers, of whom there will not be enough to satisfy industry demand.
Only 11.9 million high-skilled workers will be ready to take on the 16.1 million high-skilled jobs the study expects to be available in 2024.
Cllr Sir Richard Leese, Chair of the LGA’s City Regions Board, said: “This research paints a worrying vision of the skills gap facing the nation. Without radical reform, swathes of people face a future where they have skills mismatched for jobs, risking them being in low paid, insecure work, and reliant on benefits, at a huge cost to people’s lives and the local and national economy.”
Indeed, the study estimated that the skills gap could cause a £90 billion dent in the economy if no action is taken.
The Institute of Employment Rights argues in our Manifesto for Labour Law that one way to reduce the skills gap is to promote collective bargaining structures at both sectoral and enterprise levels. This works to disincentivise employers from competing on a race to the bottom on wages and conditions and to focus their attention on innovation and upskilling their workforce. Furthermore, open dialogue between workers and employers allows those on the frontlines of the workforce to highlight skills gaps and areas where training could improve productivity.