Competition for highly qualified professionals is set to increase as a result of Brexit

Tug of war

The UK’s decision to leave the EU is still having unforeseen consequences, as nearly three quarters of HR professionals (72%) anticipate the competition for qualified talent to increase and 61% expect to face further difficulty recruiting senior and skilled employees over the next three years.


The latest CIPD/Hays Resourcing and Talent Planning Survey found that three quarters of HR professionals are already experiencing issues when recruiting, which nearly two-thirds (65%) agree is due to the rapid change in skills needed for jobs in their organisations. The skills that will have a growing demand over the next 12 months include:


  • Professionals with leadership (58%)
  • Digital (54%)
  • Commercial awareness skills (51%)

Claire McCartney, associate research adviser at the CIPD comments: “Today’s research highlights a mounting war for talent and the subsequent need for organisations to sharpen their focus on strategic recruitment and effective retention, to attract and maintain the skills they need in an increasingly competitive labour market. Brexit, and its impact on the labour market, should act as a stimulus for organisations to focus their attention on building a stronger, more productive workforce, by staying alert to potential changes in their skill needs and being agile in their response.”


In order to position themselves as the employer of choice almost nine in ten (89%) organisations are making efforts to improve their brand identity. Despite this over half (56%) of HRs stated that their organisation still doesn’t calculate the cost of people leaving the business, even after considering labour turnover being at its highest since 2007 and only a fifth (16%) of organisations currently measure the return on investment of their recruitment activity.  


Nigel Heap, managing director of Hays UK & Ireland, states: “Not only do employers need to evaluate how they are perceived in the marketplace so they can attract the people they need, they should also ensure they have sufficient measures in place so they are better able to justify their decisions, continue to secure investment for recruitment and respond to any changes. Organisations need to have an integrated talent strategy in place to support a targeted and measured approach to recruitment. With the skills required for roles changing and an emphasis on strong leadership, digital and commercial awareness skills, providing professional development and training is key to improving retention and helping to fill skills gaps.”