The Workers Union is urging government and business to invest in skills that reflect the requirements of the modern world.
The announcement came as recent figures published by the Office for National Statistics show that job vacancies have rebounded above pre-pandemic levels.
Vacancy numbers touched on 862,000 in the last quarter, nearly 10 percent above January to March 2020 figures. Moreover, it is nearly 40 percent higher than figures recorded for January to March 2021.
In other key findings, the ONS reports that the amount of people on company payrolls grew, with 356,000 more workers added in June of this year. However, the 28.9 million people in this bracket is still 206,000 below pre-COVID levels.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak said: ‘As we approach the final stages of reopening the economy, I look forward to seeing more people back at work and the economy continuing to rebound.
‘We are bouncing back – the number of employees on payrolls is at its highest level since last April and the number of people on furlough halved in the three months to May.’
A spokesperson for The Workers Union said: ‘It’s really encouraging to see that the British economy is proving as robust as the brilliant workers who’re the engine of its success.
‘But this is not a time to rest on our laurels. Long-term unemployment is an issue of major concern, and with numbers continuing to rise, it is unlikely to get better without intervention.
‘We need to adopt policies that improve people’s chances of taking advantage of the vacancy bonanza, by offering skills development and retraining packages to get them back into work.’
The Workers Union on Jobs and Skills
Despite the debilitating effects of the pandemic and Brexit uncertainties, we have shown how resourceful a nation we are by battling back to a position of relative strength.
But now we must take the necessary steps to ensure that our recovery is a blazing furnace rather than a brief flicker.
In the short term, workers may find that they can demand higher wages as employers no longer have a slush pile to choose from. In the longer-term, the trend is more likely to move towards candidates who possess the highest skill-sets.
To get to this place, we will need a well-trained workforce able to deliver in a complex, ever-changing environment. That pipeline will only fill if skills and training incentives are in place to plug the gaping holes in recruitment to sectors as diverse as hospitality, logistics and IT.
So let’s move forward with confidence: only by investing in working people will we invest in the current and future success of our country.
The Workers Union – fighting for social justice, fighting for you