Employment, Skills & Learning in South West England Mark Spilsbury
Content • National Employer Skills Survey, 2003; • state of the labour market; • raising demand for skills: • business planning • training • conclusions.
National Employer Skills Survey • national employer survey; • fieldwork details: • 72,100 interviews nationally; 7,203 in South West; • minimum of 800 per LSC; • representative of local LSC business base • 25 minute interview with manager in overall charge of personnel issues; • fieldwork April – July, 2003; • unparalleled consistent information on areas and sectors.
State of the labour market • employment trends; • vacancies; • skill gaps;
Employment trends • low unemployment; • employment growth; • projections for further growth: • implications for next 12 months; • longer term growth
Areas of employment growth • employment in all occupational areas due to increase in absolute terms; • some increase more than others, so relative shares change: • increased shares in Professional, Associate professional, Leisure & personal service and sales; • decreased shares for Elementary, Skilled trades, Machine operatives, Administrative & secretarial.
Vacancies and size of establishment • larger establishments are more likely to have each of the vacancy types; • but largest % of each type of vacancies are actually amongst small firms.
Raising the demand for skills? • issue is demand-related, not weaknesses of skills supply? • low-wage, low productivity economy; • strategic, market management issues; • business support needed: skills an important but subsiduary issue?
Conclusions • picture is positive: low unemployment, high employment; • are vacancies a real issue? • higher level of internal skill gaps: linked to recruiting ‘below standard’? • how to raise demand may become a bigger issue: • low levels of planning • low levels of training activity • how to cope with occupational shift? • role for SSCs?