Staffing crisis

Firms boost training as skills shortages worsen

Staff training is on the increase

Companies are raising their investment in staff training to tackle worsening labour availability, according to a new survey.

More than three quarters of Scottish businesses (77%) report that skills shortages are leading to reduced output, profitability or growth, according to The Open University’s Business Barometer 2022 published in partnership with the British Chambers of Commerce.

To address the problem, more than half (53%) of organisations expect to increase their investment in staff training over the next year.

David Allen, senior partnerships manager at the Open University in Scotland, said: “Our Business Barometer report highlights more Scottish companies are struggling to recruit the right people with the right skills. This is up 8% to 70% this year.

“The need for employers to take a long-term strategic approach to addressing the skills gaps is more important than ever. These recruitment challenges place a focus on growing talent from within the organisation as well as attracting new staff.”

Russell Borthwick chief executive at Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce, added: “By 2030 a fifth of Scotland’s population will be of retirement age and by 2050 this will be one quarter. Our nation’s overall population growth since 1970 is only 5%, well behind peer nations.

“As we attempt to recover from the pandemic and grapple with the impact of geo-political events, these worrying statistics, together with the results of this survey, confirm that labour and skills shortages are worsening, acting as a dangerous drag on economic recovery and growth.”

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