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Firms worried about skill gap.

Byline: By Mail Reporter

MOST businesses in the Midlands are worried about future recruitment according to a new survey.

The AXA Risk Monitor Report revealed that 83 per cent had concerns. It also showed that 42 per cent of Midland businesses consider lack of good staff as the most common reason for business failure.

In addition, 59 per cent of those surveyed in the Midlands say it has been harder to recruit over the last three years and they consider the main reasons to be low quality of candidates, lack of skills, the inability to meet wage expectations and changing standards of education.

Kim Clemo, human resources director at AXA, said: "The well-known adage is that your most valuable business assets walk in and out of your door each day. But we wring our hands in dismay that we can't get the staff.

"We value training but have to justify it against other capital investments that always feel more pressing."

She continued: "There will be few better business investments made in the next few years than training."

According to the National Employers Skills Survey 2005 there has been a marked improvement in the number of people with skills gaps.

In fact, they have virtually halved from 11 per cent to six per cent in the last two years. However, the retail and hospitality industries are still suffering as they are finding it difficult to recruit people with soft skills such as team working and customer service.

David Way, director of skills at the Learning and Skills Council said: "It is important that businesses recognise the key contribution of skills to their success."

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SKILLS...proper training can bring benefits to companies.
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Jul 6, 2006
Words:282
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