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Fears for future of UK employment

RecessionBritain is set to feel the pinch even more as employers opt to put a freeze on their recruitment or scale back on their staffing, according to the latest research.

The report produced by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has warned that the country faces a ‘slow, painful contraction,’ whilst businesses try to survive in the current economic wasteland.

The CIPD has suggested that the employment position will worsen throughout the remaining part of 2011 and will see little improvement next year. Both the private and public sectors are forecast as being affected, with confidence declining amongst public workers and private firms predicted to tighten their collective belts with little growth anticipated.

One of the CIPD public policy advisor’s, Gerwyn Davies, said that he believes the UK will see a ‘slow, painful contraction in the jobs market’ and pointed to the eurozone as one of the primary reasons for the reticence amongst businesses to recruit. Mr Davies said that some companies were ‘scaling back’ on any planned recruitment drives to see how the British economy recovers from the latest round of assaults.

It wasn’t all bad news, as the recruitment freeze has meant that the vast majority of firms are not considering relocating abroad or outsourcing using foreign workers, keeping the jobs within the UK.

However, overall, Mr Davies said they could foresee no ‘immediate sign’ of the employment market picking up and added that they believed the figures previously forecast by the Office for Budget Responsibility may have to be revised, as the level of redundancies amongst public workers is outpacing predictions.

The Prime Minister said that the eurozone’s continued woes were clearly having a ‘bad effect’ on the UK and hindering the recovery process. However, David Cameron also said that it was important to preserve the austerity measures to demonstrate to the rest of the world that the UK is able to deal with its own debts and deficit.

But a leading charity in the UK claimed that not enough is being done to support the country’s youngsters who are unable to fund work, with those from the most deprived backgrounds being the ones most likely to be left out in the cold.

Barnardo’s has said that the government campaigns to get young people into work only kicks in from the age of 18, leaving those aged 16 or 17 but out of education, with no support to find employment.

The chief executive for the charity, Ann Marie Carrie, described Britain’s ‘uneven playing field’ and said that ‘an entire generation’ of those from the most deprived or disadvantaged backgrounds were rapidly becoming ‘lost in transition.’ Ms Carrie pointed to the increasing rate of joblessness among this age bracket, which has shot up and more than doubled in the last ten years.

The charity said that the government had to ‘tackle the issue from the root’ if there was to be any chance of ‘social mobility’ for those who were the most disadvantaged.

Ms Carrie acknowledged that the government has made some progress with the proposed introduction to increase the age of compulsory education for teenagers. However, Barnardo’s said that for each individual who was unable to secure employment and was not in education, the amount of pressure on the benefit totalled £56,000.

A spokesman for the Department of Education admitted that the number of 16 and 17 year olds not in either employment or work was currently ‘too high,’ but said that there were plans to widen the number of chances available for both vocational work and apprenticeships across the country.

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