89% of UK firms don't believe Brexit will hurt hiring plans

Almost nine in ten businesses have admitted that Brexit will not dampen their hiring plans, especially in relation to bringing in apprentices.

A recent survey from The 5% Club has found that 89% of UK businesses are confident in their ability to navigate labour shortages following the vote to leave the EU. Having surveyed 200 UK employers, the data highlights that employers are confident that apprenticeships can help bridge the gap, should the UK lose access to skilled workers.

The 5% Club is an employer-led movement which focuses on driving momentum in the recruitment of apprentices and graduates. It boasts members from FTSE 100-listed firms on its books. Launched by Leo Quinn, CEO of Balfour Beatty, the club wants to tackle skill shortages and reduce youth unemployment.

Commenting on the survey results, Lady Cobham, Director General of The 5% Club said: “It is positive to see employers reaffirm their commitment to apprenticeships despite the uncertainties presented by Brexit.

“Importantly, our members recognise that a more pressing need is around dispelling the myth that apprenticeships and ‘earn and learn’ placements are reserved for young people with less intelligence and that higher education is the only route to success. Indeed, many young people choose pathways which move between vocational and higher education.”

The report also found that 76% of employers blame the lack of information available on apprenticeships as the main reason why young candidates are not taking up opportunities on the schemes. 90% of respondents believe that improving the quality of information, offered by school’s career services, could help to change the image of apprenticeships at a national level.

“The 5% Club are passionate champions of vocational training and we hope that many more employers will sign up to our pledge to tackle skills shortages across different sectors and industries,” continued Cobham. “With more and more members joining the initiative, we are getting closer to realising our dream of training the UK’s workforce of tomorrow.”

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