It is impossible to predict how Brexit is going to play out, let alone the aftermath on the future economy of the UK. What is certain is that there is currently an exodus of foreign workers from the UK due to the uncertainty. It is easy for employers to understand why they would choose to leave given the circumstances.

In the wider economy, employers are reporting problems with filling roles. At Parker Shaw, we keep a pool of skilled and available candidates, so that our clients can be sure that we are doing everything possible to stay ahead of any hiccups in supplying staff.

There is also a drop in incoming workers, from both the EU and the rest of the world, but that is most pronounced with the drop off in incoming EU workers. The fall in the value of the pound since Brexit has further reduced the attraction of the UK to foreign workers.

Employers are raising starting salaries as a result of the shortage of skilled workers [1], although we have yet to see this in the IT sector. In the longer term, any restrictions imposed under a Brexit deal could further constrict the pool of workers available to recruiters. As we all know, IT is a sector where the number of foreign and EU applicants for jobs is particularly high, so the impact on our industry could be massive.

Regardless of how Brexit resolves, we need to encourage more UK applicants to apply for roles, and this means having more workers with the necessary skills in the first place. This cannot happen overnight and Parker Shaw are involved with local initiatives to train apprentices and encourage students within the IT and business sectors.

Further, business leaders are reporting being worried about filling skilled roles going forward. We are not yet too concerned, however any post-Brexit visa schemes for foreign workers could affect the speed with which workers could be found within the IT sector as a whole.

The majority of business are reporting to the CBI that they are expecting to struggle to find suitable candidates in the coming years. Our advice to businesses is to use a company like Parker Shaw. We find both permanent and contract candidates, and can help ease their stress by providing skilled and qualified workers for their organisation.

The overall pressure to find suitably skilled staff for positions is impacted by the lowest unemployment rates in the UK for 43 years. Of course, this might all change when the after effects of Brexit become clear.

It is possible that the IT sector might escape the worst of the post-Brexit fallout. The Conservatives are promising to give preference to highly skilled foreign workers wanting to come to the UK. However the whole economy could suffer negatively after Brexit, in the short term at least, and this will have a knock on effect to the whole economy from which IT isn’t necessarily immune.

Finally, we cannot overlook the potentially positive power of disruption on the economy, and Brexit is nothing if not disruptive. Regardless of how it all plays out, and let’s face it, none of us have a working crystal ball, you can be sure that Parker Shaw will continue to provide a first class service to our clients and applicants.

Photo by Vladislav Babienko on Unsplash

[1] The CBI’s report will add to findings last month by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, which said that companies were having to pay more for staff as they struggled to find the skilled workers they need. Wages in August grew at the second fastest rate in more than three years with recruiters reporting that the availability of staff continued to decline sharply.’

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