Britain’s ‘gazelles’ blame skills gap on bad schools rather than Brexit

The Telegraph reports that the UK education system is more of an obstacle for high-growth companies in filling jobs than the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, a survey of small firms has found.

A skills shortage is the main worry for almost half the companies questioned by private equity firm ECI Partners, which in July and August surveyed 346 so-called “gazelles” – companies growing by at least 5pc a year and with turnover of between £10m and £200m.

Just under half (48pc) blamed Britain’s schools – saying they put young people off entering their industry or produced students with poor writing skills – while 22pc pointed the finger at Brexit for making it harder to attract EU workers.

“Ultimately it’s about the UK education system, but that is long term,” one respondent said. “Short term is difficulty attracting from overseas because of uncertainty.”

Others said they were having to hire unqualified people and train them on the job, while a shortage of specialist skills was driving up salaries in some sectors. The country’s skills gap is costing UK businesses more than £2bn a year as they cough up for higher salaries, recruitment costs and temporary staffing to fill empty seats, the Open University said last month.

Read more Britain’s ‘gazelles’ blame skills gap on bad schools rather than Brexit 

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Categories: Employment.


  1. Anonymous

    ‘Others said they were having to hire unqualified people and train them on the job ../’

    Goodness me. Businesses having to provide on-the-job training for new employees. What is the world coming to?

    • Not quite right – it’s more that companies in the UK may undergo the sheer horror of behaving like normal companies in normal countries that look after their own normal people. Appalling. Obviously!

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