Youth Unemployment & the Skills Gap
ONS, Young People not in Education, Employment or Training (Oct – Dec 2016)¹:
ONS, Labour Market Statistics (Oct – Dec 2016)²:
- Unemployment for 16-24: 12.6% (down from 13.6% a year ago)
- Unemployment for aged 16 and over: 4.8% (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
- 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 Combination⁴
- 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 Results⁵
- 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 ⁶
- 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 (%) ⁷
- 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:
- The Human Capital Report 2016
- The Skills Dilemma: The Work Foundation
- Beyond the business case: The Work Foundation
- OECD: Building Skills for All: A Review of England
- The Work Foundation: Underemployment vs Unemployment
¹ ONS, Young People not in Education, Employment or Training (Oct – Dec 2016), release date: 23 February 2016. 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 (Oct – Dec 2016), release date: 15 February 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.