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Businesses report labour shortages holding back growth

Businesses report labour shortages holding back growth
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Peninsula Team, Peninsula Team

(Last updated )

In its annual Employment Trends Survey with Pertemps Network Group, the CBI reports that labour shortages are having a material impact on firms’ ability to invest, respond to demand and grow.

It reveals that 71% of UK businesses have been hit by labour shortages in the last 12 months and even more, 77%, believe that poor access to skills threatens the UK’s current labour market competitiveness.

More than a third (38%) of businesses have been unable to grow and respond to new business opportunities, despite demand, due to labour shortages in the last 12 months, while 22% have had to hold back investment in other parts of the business and 12% have shrunk due to shortages.

Respondents saw access to skills (77%) and access to labour (66%) as key threats to the UK’s labour market competitiveness while concern about the cost of living (61%) continues to be a threat.

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CBI Chief Executive, Rain Newton-Smith, said: “It is crystal clear that while labour shortages are making it more important than ever to focus on productivity, they are also making it harder to invest and grow, stifling the economic transformation needed to deliver sustainable growth.”

Businesses have been helping people get into work by increasing flexible working and making proactive investments in employee health, she went on, but with more Government support, such as expanding tax-free health support and subsidising the cost of occupational health services for SMEs, they could do even more.

A large majority (82%) of respondent firms support introducing incentives for firms to invest in productivity-boosting technology and automation when asked to what extent political parties should prioritise them in their manifestos.

In addition, more than half of businesses (54%) support the introduction of incentives for businesses to invest in workplace health measures.

For more information on flexible working, visit BrAInbox today where you can find answers to questions like Can an employee make more than one flexible working request per year?

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