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Recruiters Go East To Plug Skills Gap

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The UK’s skills shortage is turning bosses away from local labour markets, according to the Recruitment Confidence Index.

Ten per cent of companies quizzed recruit from countries in Eastern Europe, compared to 7% from the rest of the EU, 4% from Asia and 4% from Canada and the USA.

The survey, produced by Cranfield’s School of Management and The Daily Telegraph, claims a lack of professional and technical skills amongst UK workers is triggering this overseas drive.

Two thirds (66%) of organisations reported recruitment difficulties due to a poor skills pool in the UK, and 39% believed the quality of job candidates to have fallen since last year.

According to the survey, the prospect for UK skills seems bleak as almost all organisations questioned (98%) predicted these problems would either remain the same or rise during 2006.

Shaun Tyson, Professor of Human Resource Management at Cranfield School of Management, commented: "The UK simply doesn't have enough skilled people to meet the demands of a growing economy and an ageing population. Expansion in the economy is becoming increasingly dependent upon attracting high quality employees from overseas. We anticipate European labour markets will therefore grow in significance to employers".

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