Get Skilled Or Die Part I

To succeed in today’s workplace young people need more specialised, focussed and relevant skills. Given the current high levels of unemployment, underemployment and low wage employment there is an urgent need for young and old to develop the skills valued by employers.

The current pattern of reduced consumer demand and increasing raw material and food costs seems likely to continue, as we settle into what commentators are calling the ‘new normal’ of low/no growth.

The spectre of high youth unemployment is not unique to this country, as it is common across many nations within and beyond Europe.

The irony of the current economic crisis is that as unemployment remains high, the demand for workers with the right skills is increasing.

The skills shortage stems from the need for the education system to prioritise and teach the skills needed for success in the new economy.

The world has moved on from the traditional education system developed for the industrial age to the demands of the digital age and its requirement for new thinking and new skills.

Demand for workers in traditional areas with traditional skills is reducing as the effects of automation, robotics and low cost competition increase.

Demand for workers in new areas with new skills is increasing, as people with specific skill-sets are sought by the labour market.

The solution lies in the need for the education system to be more skills-focussed in the way it prepares students for work in the 21st century.

The level of innovation in the workplace needs to be matched by that in education to ensure students develop the skills wanted by employers.

In the absence of such development, the skills gap will grow and unemployment, particularly youth unemployment, will remain high, as employability remains beyond the reach of many people.

SO, as unemployment levels increase, the demand from employers for people with the right skills will also increase; the only solution is for people to develop new skills.

What do you think? Do you have the right skills?  Get in touch, we would love to hear your views contact Nick on 028 8224 9494 or via Twitter @nick_oec.