CBI/Pearson survey warns of Northern Ireland skills ‘crisis’

4A major survey of business employers across the UK has warned of serious skills shortages in the future because of a mismatch between what is being provided and what is actually needed. The survey also questions the quality of the careers advice young people are being given.

The CBI/Pearson survey included 300 employers (61 from Northern Ireland) employing 1.2 million people. In Northern Ireland some
50 per cent of respondents fear they will not be able to recruit enough high-skilled workers to support their growth plans. There continues to be a particular shortfall in young people developing skills around the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.

Commenting on the survey findings, CBI Northern Ireland Director Nigel Smyth said: “While the Northern Ireland economy continues to make headway we must be on our guard as local growth risks being undermined by a shortage of the higher level skills businesses need to get on, and the situation is only set to get worse”.

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