According to a survey of 2,000 employers, UK companies are experiencing “supply shock” as fewer EU citizens are choosing to come to the UK for work and, because of this, are now struggling to fill vacancies.
Gerwyn Davis of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) stated that: “The most recent official data shows that there has been a significant slowdown in the number of EU nationals coming to work in the UK over the past year”.
Their research also showed that companies are being forced to raise wages as the number of applicants per vacancies across all levels of skilled jobs has fallen drastically since the summer of 2017.
Half of the organisations with serious recruitment problems have said that they have now increased starting salaries as a result of the drop.
The number of people moving to the UK from EU countries is at its lowest level since 2013. The net figure for long-term migration in 2017 was a mere 101,000.
UK employers who have historically relied on non-UK workers to fill roles are now particularly vulnerable to the prospect of the upcoming changes to immigration policy for EU citizens.
Adecco Group, which participated in the research, said: “With Brexit looming, we’re seeing a talent shortage and a more competitive marketplace. In this candidate-short landscape the pressure is on employers to not only offer an attractive salary, but also additional benefits”.
In response, a government spokesperson stated: “After we leave the EU, the UK will continue to be the open country it has always been. We will have in place an immigration system that delivers control over who comes to the UK, but that welcomes the brightest and best who want to work hard and contribute”.
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