It’s no secret that there are skills gaps across the workforce. But what many don’t realise is just how big of an impact these gaps can have on employment. In fact, according to a recent study, nearly 60% of businesses say skills gaps are impacting their ability to fill open positions.
This is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. Not only does it make it difficult for businesses to find the workers they need, but it also keeps qualified individuals from getting the jobs they want.
The good news is, there are things local authorities can do to help close the skills gap in their area. By investing in education and training programs, they can give residents the chance to acquire the skills needed to succeed in today’s economy.
Please keep this in mind as you make decisions about job growth and economic development in your community. The future of work depends on it!
What are skills gaps?
A skills gap is the difference between employment needs and the capabilities possessed by potential employees. It can refer to a current lack of employment opportunities or a mismatch between job qualifications and those of individuals seeking employment. The more knowledge and experience required for a specific position, the greater the likelihood of a skills gap opening up. This can be particularly detrimental, as it hinders economic growth as employers struggle to fill vacancies with qualified, capable personnel. A bridge needs to be built to close this gap and optimise employment frequency and productivity.
The most affected industries
Skills gaps present a challenge to many industries in today’s advanced economy, but some are particularly vulnerable. For example, the retail industry seeks both talented sales associates with extensive knowledge of their products as well as managerial assistant positions that require top-level qualifications and experience.
The construction industry is facing an increasing demand for workers but struggles with a scarcity of available labourers with specific skill sets such as bricklaying or gravel hauling.
The financial sector has also been hit hard by a lack of employees with sufficient qualifications and is actively searching for more qualified employees to close this gap.
Of course, skills gaps affect every sector and business. As the economy continues to evolve and become even more competitive, companies need reliable sources of skilled talent to remain competitive, viable businesses.
How skills gaps affect the local economy
Local Authorities around the UK are increasingly facing the stark reality of a skills gap. As this gap widens, local economies are hindered by a workforce not properly equipped to understand and utilise the rapidly changing technologies of today. Local businesses can suffer as an untrained or undertrained labour force fails to meet expectations in the competitive global economy. Furthermore, there is an increased strain placed on educational institutions to close this gap, as they are called upon to produce more highly skilled workers due to limited resources and knowledge base.
Often, skills gaps can be addressed by technology such as Skillzminer which provides micro-learning enabling residents to gain knowledge and competencies required by specific roles. Local authorities must take action and invest in programs that will empower citizens to grow with technological advancements and ensure that they remain competitive in our ever-evolving global landscape.
How Local Authorities can close skills gaps
Closing the skills gap in our industry must be one of our top priorities. By making use of employment and skills technologies, we can equip our workforce with the most up-to-date knowledge and qualifications needed for success. Training programs must also be implemented to ensure that employees are constantly learning new skills and perfecting old ones. With these strategies in place, those entering the market will possess the necessary skill sets to compete and thrive in their chosen field. This will not only benefit businesses but society as a whole by providing citizens with employment opportunities aligned with their capabilities.
The gaping skills gap is a global issue, and worldwide Local Authorities are looking for ways to narrow it. This skills gap can cause a range of issues, from increased unemployment and underemployment to decreased economic growth and innovation. As such, we urge Local Authorities to take action now to bridge this gap before the negative consequences become even more pronounced. Not only does taking action to create a range of new jobs for those who lack the necessary skill set, but it also helps local economies remain competitive in a global market by increasing their levels of productivity.
Closing the skills gap is a long-term investment that has real benefits – if Local Authorities want to help toward building brighter professional futures today, they should actively consider how they can contribute to closing this skills gap now. To help close the skills gap in your local area, sign up for our freemium package which provides access to resources that will help individuals learn new skills. Take action today and invest in closing the skills gap so that your industry can thrive!