William Eichler 17 July 2018

South East councils call for powers to tackle skills shortage

South East councils call for powers to tackle skills shortage  image

Local authorities have called for greater powers to help address the skills shortage as a new report shows that nearly all job opportunities will soon be closed to people without qualifications.

A new study into the skills shortage, co-published by South East England Councils (SEEC), found that by 2024 only 1% of South East jobs are expected to be filled by workers with no qualifications — down from 8.8% in 2004.

The report, co-published with research specialist Shared Intelligence, also calculated that by 2024 48.5% of jobs will need at least a foundation degree — up from 27.9% in 2004.

Only 8.5% of the South East’s 47,000 apprenticeships offer degree-level qualifications despite the rising demand from employers for more skills.

The proportion of South East residents training for NVQ level 2 qualifications has fallen by 57% since 2011-12, and half the South East residents without qualifications (49%) are unemployed.

‘The South East is the golden goose of the UK economy, contributing a net £154bn to the Treasury from 2000-16 – the UK’s highest – and to sustain this we need skills,’ said SEEC chairman Cllr Roy Perry.

‘Local authorities can help deliver better skills but we need greater powers to do this – for example the ability to direct skills funding to meet local needs and to encourage students to take up engineering and science.’

SEEC deputy chairman Cllr Ralph Bagge added: ‘Councils can play an important role in making sure our residents are well-placed to take advantage of local job opportunities.

‘We know skills will be increasingly important, so we would like to explore additional ways that councils could help incentivise people to gain qualifications that will get them into work.’

Pushing for real reform image

Pushing for real reform

The pandemic was a game changer for the central/local government relationship, says Joanne Roney, who has started her two-year stint as president of Solace.
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Worker - Adoption Team

Essex County Council
£30906 - £42254 per annum
Social Worker - Adoption TeamPermanent, Full Time and part time£30,906 to £42,254 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Health Protection Specialist x2

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£35,745 - £40,876 per annum
We are looking for an experienced and enthusiastic person to join our public health team. Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Wandsworth Grants and Project Support Officer

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£28,452 to £34,479 per annum
This is an exciting new role within the Wandsworth Voluntary Sector team and wider Community and Partnerships Team. London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Performance and Management Information Support Officer

Brent Council
£30,048 - £31,557 p.a. inc.
We have an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic individual to join our Children and Young People’s Performance Team. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Assistant Director - Inclusion

Suffolk County Council
£75,745 - £93,245 pa
We are seeking a highly skilled Assistant Director Ipswich, Suffolk
Recuriter: Suffolk County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue