Lack of work training heightens skills gap

Over eight million workers receive no training at work

More than one in three businesses do not provide their staff with proper training, exacerbating the UK’s ‘skills gap’, it has been claimed.

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) says firms are not taking government incentives to increase training in the workplace, and the UK’s competitiveness is being put at risk.

In a recent report, entitled 2020 Vision for Skills, the TUC says of those workers who do receive training at work, only 11.5% receive a nationally recognised qualification.

This means over eight million workers are not receiving training and by 2020 their will be a serious productivity gap between the UK and other European countries, such as France and Germany, the TUC says.

Over 70% of the UK’s workforce has now completed its compulsory education, however employers are concerned by serious deficiencies in basic skills such as maths and English displayed by many young people.

The TUC research shows that over six million people of working age have ‘severe problems’ relating to literacy.

Brendan Barber, TUC secretary general, said: “Employers should stop complaining so much about the skills levels of their staff and spend more on training them.

“Despite many government incentives one in three employers are denying training to millions of workers who need it most.

“And the government must legislate to make sure that workers get paid time off to train.”

© Crimson Business Ltd 2006

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