The real skills shortage in the UK

The Edge Foundations new report published today on the UK’s skills shortages shows an estimated 600,000 vacancies in digital technology are costing the country £63 billion a year[1]. 

Let that sink in a moment.

600,000 tech vacancies, but GCSE entries in IT and computing down 11% in last year – is the #EBacc costing the UK economy £63bn a year?

Latest government figures show that there are at least half-a-million young people aged 16-24 who are unemployed, and some estimates put the figure significantly higher. At the same time, businesses are clearer than ever about the scale of skills shortages now and the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and Brexit in causing them to grow further.

 

New research highlighted in the report from City and Guilds, suggests that nine out of ten UK employers struggle to recruit and two thirds predict that skills shortages will stay the same or get worse in the next three to five years. This is reinforced by growing proportions of manufacturing and services firms reporting recruitment difficulties in the British Chambers of Commerce Quarterly Economic Survey.

 

techUK also highlight that there are an estimated 600,000 tech vacancies in the UK, a figure predicted to reach 1 million by 2020. Fifty-two percent of digital businesses report that vacancies are hard to fill and this is costing the UK economy an estimated £63 billion per year in lost additional GDP..

Olly Newton from the Edge Foundation added

‘If the government is not persuaded by the educational case for curriculum change in our schools, then the economic argument is incontestable. This report summarises the skills crisis in the tech industry and it’s not going away without some bold measures in our schools, colleges, universities and workplaces.’

Read the full report here

Why Work Experience Works

Work experience is one of the most important links between employers and schools/colleges. It provides an opportunity for young people to experience first-hand (and often for the first time) what happens in a working environment.

Each year Education  Business Partnership work with their extensive network of employers to source both pre- and post-16 work experience placements for over 1,500 students from schools and colleges across the Thames Valley and Wiltshire. The placements they source help young people develop their employability skills while gaining an insight into working life and potential career opportunities. Students on vocational courses also gain the required first-hand experience to support their studies.

EBP take great pride in tailoring placements to individual students via thier fully-managed service, work experience placements help to inspire young people about their future career, as well as encouraging:

  • Increased motivation, self-awareness and confidence
  • Better communication, organisation and social skills
  • Enhanced awareness of the work environment
  • Positive attitudes to work

“I am so lucky to have gained such valuable skills over the past few months such as gaining more confidence so when I am left on my own I know what I am supposed to be doing. I have had such amazing feedback from my placement which just makes it even more special.” Student

University & Beyond: Evaluation

The first employability event between Beths Grammar School and EBP Kent, delivered for the benefit of the school’s Year 11 and any Year 12 students who were able to visit the business volunteers at various points of the day. Working with the lead contact at the school, Matthew Neylan, an event was created catering to the student’s future aspirations, general employability skills (interview techniques, job application, for example) and the opportunity to come into contact with a range of education and training providers.

 This was a full day event, lasting from 0910 until 1530, taking place on the 26th January 2018.  A member of EBP Kent’s Level 6 Guidance staff also attended the event to offer impartial advice to any students still unsure of what their ‘next steps’ might involve. Continue reading “University & Beyond: Evaluation”

For me or not for me?

Employability & Skills

Employability Skills have been captured by all the members of the CBI who, when surveyed, in 2011, gave a very clear list of their priorities when recruiting. Teamwork, communication, leadership are all on the list.

Students need opportunities to hone these skills as early as possible and to gain confidence with a range of different experiences until their competencies are strong in all areas. EBP Kent is convinced the best route is in partnership with local, regional and national employers who can support and in some cases lead delivery of the most suitable programmes. Employers inform and update the EBP weekly, they are the best conduit to give guidance and lead these areas, at the very core of all that is Education Business Partnership. Continue reading “For me or not for me?”

Collaborating “Subjects in the City”

Local Education Business Partnerships (EBPs) play a key role in bringing together schools, businesses and community organisations in local areas and supporting tens of thousands of pupils every year to develop their employability skills and drive up their aspirations. Some EBPs are coordinated by the borough, and others are independent bodies that work in partnership with their local council.

 

Subjects in the City was an innovative project which aimed to bring together City business and teachers from local schools to enrich the curriculum across a range of areas. Continue reading “Collaborating “Subjects in the City””

Lessons from Belgium

B&E Together Ltd helped organise a Belgium mobility experience for students of Dearne Valley College at CVO Heusden- Zolder.  B&E thanked the team at CVO Heusden Zolder for their commitment to the development and training of Young People from the UK. The students were committed and enthusiastic throughout the project and learned new skills and techniques during their training.

The group was extremely complimentary to their Belgium Hosts portraying their thanks to the team at CVO for their support and especially to Joris Quintens. Here is what one of the students said about the whole trip Continue reading “Lessons from Belgium”