Youth Unemployment & the Skills Gap

How many young people are unemployed? What is the impact of the skills gap on the economy?

ONS, Young People not in Education, Employment or Training (May 2017)¹:

 

ONS, Labour Market Statistics (May 2017)²:

  • Unemployment for 16-24: 12.5% (down from 13.7% a year ago)
  • Unemployment for aged 16 and over: 4.6% (down from 5.1% a year ago)

Also see ONS report Analysis of the UK labour market – estimates of skills mismatch using measures of over and under education (release date: 17 March 2016)

 

British Chambers of Commerce, Business and Education Survey³:

Two-thirds of businesses (69%) believe that secondary schools are not effective at preparing young people for work

  • Two-thirds of businesses (69%) believe that secondary schools are not effective at preparing young people for work
  • Top five entry level skills that firms value most are communication (88%), literacy (69%), numeracy (64%), computer literacy (56%) and teamwork (53%
  • Firms think careers advice should include workplace experiences (64%), encounters with employers and employees (62%), and link curriculum learning to careers (45%)

 

CBI/Pearson Education, Education and Skills survey 2016: The Right Combination

89% of businesses believe the most important factor when hiring school and college leavers is their attitude to work

  • By far the most important factor employers weigh up when recruiting school and college leavers is their attitude to work (89%) followed by their aptitude for work (66%); these rank well ahead of formal qualifications (23%)
  • Around half of businesses are not satisfied with school leavers’ work experience (56%) and their skills in communication (50%), analysis (50%) and self-management (48%)
  • For the 14-19 age group, employers believe a top priority for schools and colleges should be developing awareness of working life with support from businesses (42%) as well as improving the quality of careers advice (42%)

 

UK Commission for Employment and Skills, Employer Skills Survey 2015: UK Results

  • In 2015, there were 209,000 reported skill-shortage vacancies (an increase of 43% from 2013)
  • 14% of employers reported skills gaps, with approximately 1.4 million staff lacking proficiency in their current role (5% of the UK workforce)

 

Princes Trust, Youth Index 2017

  • 28% of young people don’t feel like they have control over their lives
  • Over a third of young people (36%) do not feel in control of their job prospects
  • 42% of young people feel traditional goals e.g. owning a house or getting a steady job are unrealistic

Eurostat, Unemployment rate of 15-24 year olds (%) 

unemploymenteurostat

Please click on the image above to view the interactive chart

 

  • For the latest quarter (2015 Q3) 15.2% of 15-24 year olds in the UK were unemployed. This compares to over 45% unemployment of the same age group in Greece, Spain and Republic of Macedonia and under 10% in Iceland and Germany

 

Other useful links:

 

¹ ONS, Young People not in Education, Employment or Training (May 2017), release date: 25 May 2017. Estimates of young people who are NEET (not in education, employment or training) broken down by age, sex and by labour market status.

² ONS, Labour Market Statistics (May 2017), release date: 17 May 2017. Estimates of labour market statistics (including employment, unemployment and economic inactivity) for UK

³ British Chambers of Commerce, Business and Education Survey, release date: 11 Nov 2015. A survey of businesses and educational institutions across the UK to learn what could be done to bridge the gap between education and business.

⁴ CBI/Pearson Education,Education and Skills survey 2016: The Right Combination, release date: July 2016. A guide to trends in business opinion and practice across education and skills issues.

⁵ UK Commission for Employment and Skills, Employer Skills Survey 2015, release date: January 2016. The survey explores the skills issues employers face and the action they are taking to address them, providing a unique skills perspective alongside other labour market information.

⁶ Prince’s Trust , Youth Index 2017, release date: January 2017. It takes an in-depth look into the views and outlooks of young people aged 16 to 25. The Index gauges’ young people’s feelings about their lives today and their feelings about the future.

⁷ Eurostat, Unemployment rate of 15-24 year olds (%), release date: 2016. Eurostat provide high quality statistics on Europe. We used the data on their site to create this infographic which shows unemployment rates by sex, age and citizenship.

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