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Round-up of the week

Posted on 4th December 2015

1 in 3 HR professionals will struggle to find skilled employees

More than one in three HR professionals believe finding skilled employees will be problematic next year, new research has revealed.

According to a study by Powwownow, 36 per cent expect sourcing and hiring people with the requisite skills is going to be a struggle in 2016.

As a result, nearly half plan to invest more heavily in graduate schemes in order to attract suitable candidates and get them up to speed. Furthermore, almost four in ten are looking at adapting remote working initiatives so they can fill gaps across their company.

CIPD: Migrant workers helping to fill skills gaps

The CIPD has hailed the role migrant workers are playing in plugging skills gaps throughout the economy.

According to the latest official figures, 336,000 people arrived in the UK during the year to June 2015, while net migration is now at its highest level on record.

Most of these people have arrived in the UK either to study or seek employment - and the CIPD believes this is good news for recruiters and businesses across the country.

Gerwyn Davies, labour market adviser at the body, said: "The growing proportion of migrants coming to the UK who have a definite job to go to illustrates the valuable role migrant workers are playing in minimising skills shortages in a buoyant UK jobs market.”

The CIPD has noted that many firms that take on migrants to fill skills gaps are also highly likely to provide more job opportunities to young people and devote resources into upskilling existing workers.

Mr Davies said that as well as reducing skills shortages in certain areas, it has also helped to keep a lid on wage growth, which in turn has helped interest rates remain at their record low of 0.5 per cent.

"A competitive, flexible labour market is a key reason why businesses are able to access the talent and skills that they need," he commented. "However, policymakers must recognise the need to close the gap between education and work to ensure that British workers are equipped with the skills that will enable them to compete for jobs on a level playing field."

Employee engagement 'linked to commercial success'

Businesses that prioritise employee engagement could see this reflected in their commercial performance, a major retailer has argued.

Speaking at the Engage or Bust conference organised by Engage for Success, Mark Price, deputy chairman of John Lewis, said there is a "real correlation" between the two, Personnel Today reports.

He said this is because engaged employees work harder, which in turn can drive greater customer loyalty and sustainable profit.

"The magic of employee engagement is that people feel they own the business, in terms of decisions, strategy and profit - and working in this way helps the business grow organically," Mr Price added.

If you want to discuss pressing issues in the HR sector, why not get views and insights from our specialists here at The Maine Group?