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Employers willing to sign up to skills pledge


Almost half of employers have revealed that they are considering or would consider signing up to the skills pledge or the Train to Gain initiative, according to a new survey.

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) annual learning and development survey also showed, however, that 53% say their learning and development work has not been influenced by the Leitch skills agenda.

Only 13% have signed the employer skills pledge, despite the majority of organisations reporting that they will require a broader range of skills in two years, and 44% reporting that they will also require a higher level of skills.

A lack of soft skills is also of concern to bosses. More than 65% feel that new employees lack both communication and interpersonal skills and management and leadership skills (54%).

Raising literacy and numeracy levels is also on the agenda. The vast majority of organisations (87%) believe that it is government's responsibility to ensure that young people are educated to appropriate standards of numeracy and literacy. Just over half believe employers have a role to play in raising standards within the workforce.

Victoria Winkler, learning and development adviser at the CIPD, said: "There is a disconnect between what government is offering employers and what they feel they need, but the large proportion of employers considering signing up to government skills initiatives demonstrates that there is much to play for."

Surprisingly, more respondents expect the funding of learning and development to increase over the next year rather than decrease (25% compared to 20%) with the majority predicting that funding will remain stable.

However, the reality in the public sector is different: 45% of respondents reported a cut in training funds available over the past 12 months. Voluntary sector organisations continue to spend more per employee per year on training, compared with both the private sector and public sector: 77% in the voluntary sector reported that funding for training has remained stable or increased, compared with 75% in the private sector and 54% in the public sector.

The CIPD Learning and Development Survey 2008 will be available at from 18 April 2008.


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