Budget comment from Institute for Employment Studies: Lack of action on labour and skills shortages will “throttle growth and fuel inflation”

IES News

23 Sep 2022

Tony Wilson, Director of the Institute for Employment Studies, said:

“There are over a million unfilled jobs in the UK, but still half a million fewer people in work than before the pandemic. The economy is creating jobs but there aren’t enough workers to fill them.  Unfortunately though, today’s budget measures will make virtually no difference to the shortages and challenges that firms are facing.  If anything, plans to force low paid part time workers to work more hours could make things worse, by forcing people to change jobs or give up work entirely.  It also misses the point that part-time work has fallen since the pandemic began while full time work is rising.  The problem for the economy and employers is that we don’t have enough workers, not that our workers don’t work enough hours.

“There are nearly two million people who are out of work, not looking for work but who want a job.  Many of them are older and have health conditions, are not on benefits and are not getting any support at all.  We need a proper plan to help people into work and to help employers fill their jobs, otherwise we’ll continue to throttle growth and fuel inflation.”