Prospects brighten for younger workers in 2016 as firms gear up for the future

Lucy Thornycroft,  director of the CBI in Yorkshire and the Humber.  Picture Bruce Rollionson
Lucy Thornycroft, director of the CBI in Yorkshire and the Humber. Picture Bruce Rollionson
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THREE quarters of firms in Yorkshire and Humber say they plan to increase the numbers of young people they employ next year, according to a new survey.

The latest CBI/Accenture Employment Trends Survey also found that 50 per cent of companies will grow their workforce next year across the region, with permanent jobs outstripping temporary roles.

Job prospects for young people have remained positive with many of these firms planning to recruit graduates and apprentices. But despite the upbeat picture on job creation, firms are concerned about rising labour costs through the planned National Living Wage and the apprenticeship levy, and against the backdrop of an unreformed business rates system.

Lucy Thornycroft, CBI Yorkshire & Humber director, said: “Firms in Yorkshire and Humber are gearing up for a positive 2016 with many planning to create jobs, most of which will be permanent. Young people should find more chances to get a foot on the career ladder this year, with many firms looking to boost their intake of graduates and apprentices.

“It’s vital to see everyone enjoy the rewards of the recovery and Yorkshire and Humber has a big role in driving the UK economy forward. Growth should work for everyone, and raising skills is the key route to ensuring this happens through improved productivity and pay.”

Emma McGuigan, managing director of Accenture Technology, UK & Ireland added: “Business optimism is absolutely clear, but these findings also signal a real challenge in the employment landscape. Most significantly, just under half (46 per cent) of respondents reported a lack of skills is threatening to have a major impact on the UK’s labour market competitiveness.

“For that reason, over half (52 per cent) of respondents cited the development and maintenance of digital skills within organisations as having a new urgency.”

The latest CBI/Accenture Employment Trends Survey also found that 50 per cent of companies will grow their workforce next year across the region, with permanent jobs outstripping temporary roles.

Job prospects for young people have remained positive with many of these firms planning to recruit graduates and apprentices. But despite the upbeat picture on job creation, firms are concerned about rising labour costs through the planned National Living Wage and the apprenticeship levy, and against the backdrop of an unreformed business rates system.

Lucy Thornycroft, CBI Yorkshire & Humber director, said: “Firms in Yorkshire and Humber are gearing up for a positive 2016 with many planning to create jobs, most of which will be permanent. Young people should find more chances to get a foot on the career ladder this year, with many firms looking to boost their intake of graduates and apprentices.

“It’s vital to see everyone enjoy the rewards of the recovery and Yorkshire and Humber has a big role in driving the UK economy forward. Growth should work for everyone, and raising skills is the key route to ensuring this happens through improved productivity and pay.”

Emma McGuigan, managing director of Accenture Technology, UK & Ireland added: “Business optimism is absolutely clear, but these findings also signal a real challenge in the employment landscape. Most significantly, just under half (46 per cent) of respondents reported a lack of skills is threatening to have a major impact on the UK’s labour market competitiveness. For that reason, over half (52 per cent) of respondents cited the development and maintenance of digital skills within organisations as having a new urgency.”