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UK – Labour market short of 3.1 million, says Randstad

22 January 2013

The UK’s workforce will see a shortfall of 3.1 million people by 2050 if skills shortages are not tackled. The shortage in workers is also caused by an ageing workforce and restrictive migration policy. Teachers are expected to be in shortest supply, according to new research by Randstad.

The staffing company looked at employment figures by the EU’S statistics office to establish the gap between employment demand and workforce supply.

The analysis showed that with a population of 74.5 million in 2050, the UK will require a workforce of 35.4 million to meet demand. 45.1 million people, 60.5% of the population, are forecast to be eligible to work in 2050. But even if the employment rate matches pre-downturn levels of 71.6%, an ageing population will leave the UK with only 32.3 million people in employment – over 3 million short of the 35.4 million required to meet demand.

Skills shortages are an additional problem with Randstad expecting the education sector to suffer the most in the future. The construction and health sectors will also face large workforce shortfalls.

 “Our projections are conservative but they still portray a worrying scenario for the country over the coming decades. With an ageing population, we need to ensure we are open for business and welcoming talent from around the world to bolster our workforce,” said Mark Bull, UK CEO of Randstad. 


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