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SMEs Face Skills Gap


Two-fifths small and medium businesses have difficulty recruiting the right skills from their local market and find the skills gap a severe business threat, according to a survey of over 300 SME HR managers.

The study by Inter-Tel found that workforce availability was exacerbated by poor transport links (23%) proximity of the work force and a limited local skills pool (32%).

However, 30% of SMEs said they thought it would be easier to attract staff if they offered flexible working.

Despite this, two thirds (66%) of those questioned were not flexi friendly.

Inter-Tel’s managing director, Chris Harris said that remote working could help SMEs access the skills pool they need.

"There’s no reason why a company based in bath can’t have access to the skills base in Birmingham through a flexi working operation," he said.

“By offering staff more flexible working hours or the chance to work from home, immediately the skills horizon broadens and in turn helps overcome associated trends of lateness, absenteeism, stress and low productivity."


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