TUC warns of “looming skills crisis” as workforce training drops

Date: 02nd Sep 2019

The TUC has warned that the UK is facing a looming skills crisis after new analysis revealed a sharp drop in workplace training.  The TUC says that with automation and new technology changing the way many work, millions will need the chance to re-skill over the next 20 years. 

The TUC study shows that workers are, on average, receiving 10% less training a year than in 2011. For young workers (-16%) and lower qualified workers (-20%) the trend is even worse. Young workers, those most in need, have lost the equivalent of a day’s training a year. The new report builds on an earlier study which showed that workplace training has fallen significantly over the past 20 years.

The Training Trends in Britain report also reveals that:

  • Employee training courses are becoming shorter with more than a half lasting (56%) less than a week, compared to around a third (34%) in 1996
  • The proportion of off-the-job training has plummeted from 73% in 1996 to 53% in 2018
  • Union members are more likely to get training, with 37% saying they accessed training in the last 3 months compared to 22% of non-union members

But with huge cuts to adult education and fewer courses being run for workers, the UK is on a course for a massive skills deficit.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“The world of work is going to change massively over the coming years. If employers don’t increase workplace training, Britain faces a looming skills and productivity crisis. Everyone must be given the training they need to keep up with changes in technology.”

The Training Trends in Britain report draws on data from the government’s quarterly Labour Force Survey and other large datasets, including the UK Household Longitudinal Study, the Skills & Employment Survey, and the Employer Skills Survey. Read the full Training Trends in Britain report here.  

Christian Berenger Ezitracker MD said:

In the UK cleaning sector, there are a growing number of digital-only businesses with models based on immediacy, lower cost and detailed, real-time analytics. They are leaving their old-school analogue and paper-based competitors behind.  Soft FM service providers can manage the employee lifecycle of hundreds of cleaning operatives in a sector that has a notoriously high staff turnover rate. Employers will need to increase workplace training, learning and development to avoid a looming skills and productivity crisis, but also to keep up with changes in technology.

By recording key data, performing analytics, and even providing predictive insights, it’s clear that automation at each stage of the employee lifecycle is extremely powerful. By facilitating the employee journey through automation, from onboarding, to training learning and development, flexible rostering and real-time attendance verification, all the way through to accurate payroll, we can collectively raise standards and up-skill the sector.   

Download: A Cleaning Contractor’s Guide to Workforce Management Technology here.

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