2021 Business Barometer published

The Open University has published its annual Business Barometer report for 2021. 

The key points are:

  • 63% of decision makers agree their organisation has found recruiting difficult as candidates didn’t have the required skills for the role.
  • And yet, 30% have spent more on recruitment in the last 12 months than in the past (average spend per employer is around £23,400). For 42%, this was due to employers struggling to find the right skills.
  • Some 28% have had to recruit at a lower level than expected in the last 12 months due to a lack of skills. 79% of these have spent money on training these new hires to get them up to speed – at an average of £16,800.
  • The total spend on temporary staff came in at £3.2bn, with SMEs picking up more than £3bn of this.
  • Some 64% think a lack of candidate skills has lengthened recruitment and 63% agree that the coronavirus pandemic has made recruiting appropriately skilled candidates more difficult.
  • However, 41% say their organisations are planning to increase recruitment levels in the next six months in comparison to the last half year. Just 21% say they will decrease.
  • Two thirds (68%) agree they are optimistic about their organisation’s recovery over the next 12 months, with the same amount optimistic about the recovery of the UK economy as a whole.
  • In the next year, almost two thirds (63%) of our respondents agree their organisation is planning to make their workforce more diverse and their workplace more inclusive.

The full report is attached below.