The report states that although only a small minority of businesses reported vacancies unfilled because of skill shortages, nearly all business with a skills shortage (93%) found it had an impact on the operation of the business. The survey also finds concentrations of these skills shortages in particular industries and occupations (such as Skilled Trade occupations), concentrations which have been reported in previous English surveys;

Whilst the proportion of businesses with vacancies has risen since 2009, it has not risen to the levels observed in 2007. Overall, the proportion of all vacancies which are skill shortage vacancies has remained stable since 2009, but this masks variation by size, sector and region. For example, mid sized establishments (employing between 25 and 199 people) reported an increase in the proportion of vacancies which are skill-shortage, in contrast to larger or smaller establishments;

Over 1.3 million employees did not have the skills required to perform their job role. Looking back at previous surveys in England, there are persistent pockets of concentration of these skills gaps, to which training is often a response;

Just over a half of employees (53%) received training in the previous year, a slight decline on the 56% reported in 2009. As in previous years, training rates varied significantly between occupations, with 44% of those employed as managers receiving training compared to 70% of those employed in caring and leisure services

Around a third of businesses (30%) had recruited someone straight from education in the last 2-3 years. The majority of these were satisfied with the work-readiness of education leavers, with this satisfaction rising with the age of the education leaverThe ability of businesses to adapt, respond and even thrive in such challenging times relies upon developing and harnessing the talents and skills of their people.

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