With Brexit just around the corner, businesses of all shapes and sizes are concerned about the impact the UK’s split from the European Union will have on their future recruitment capabilities. We reveal the key ways Brexit could impact you.  

Prime Minister Theresa May recently announced that the UK’s Brexit negotiations will “work for businesses”, with an emphasis on skilled work.  May also claims that the post-Brexit immigration system “will allow the UK to attract the “brightest and best” from around the world”, but not everyone is convinced. 

Around 25% of employers in the UK have staff from the EU, but 50% of these businesses would now think twice about employing an EU national. One piece of good news arising from the recent draft agreement signing is that the UK can still enter into trade deals with non-EU countries during the transition period (March 2019-2020), but this may be small comfort to organisations with vacancies to fill.  

Some industries are faring well under the uncertainty; one in ten enquiries for UK tech jobs are from overseas workers, for example. At this point in time, four in ten tech roles are being filled by highly-skilled non-EU workers, primarily from India. Some sectors are struggling, however. Healthcare in particular is concerned about the lower skilled, lower wage roles such as care home workers and nurses; the NHS is predicted to be short of 51,000 nurses following Brexit. More than two in five UK employers (44 per cent) reported they had found it more difficult to fill vacancies in their organisation over the past 12 months as the UK becomes a less attractive destination for prospective workers. 

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) predicts that recruitment for UK businesses will prove even more challenging from 2021 due to further restrictions being placed on migration for EU citizens, particularly with regards to low-skilled workers.  

An interesting development is currently taking place with UK workers. The nearer the Brexit deadline comes, the more professionals are actively job seeking; last month saw a 26% rise compared to the month prior. This may be due to their employer being reticent to divulge what opportunities for progression may be available post-Brexit, or due to fear that their position may be transferred overseas. Financial services workers have particular cause for concern – 5,000 jobs are predicted to be moved abroad by the March deadline.  

News that EU leaders have agreed the Brexit deal was met with mixed reactions; The Guardian reports that business leaders are rallying behind the deal amidst fears of a possible market crash, even though the deal will cost the UK £100bn a year in lost trade and income, and total trade between the UK and the EU would fall by 46%. The alternative – a no-deal scenario – would cost far more.  

What’s your take on the latest Brexit developments? If you’re worried about how Britain’s departure from the EU will affect your business, our experts can set your mind at ease. Contact us today to discuss your plans post-Brexit.  

Stuart Stephen

Stuart Stephen

Chief Customer Officer

Stuart is a Chartered Engineer who has operated in senior strategic and operational leadership roles with global corporations.  He’s passionate about finding and realising value from synergies across people, processes and technologies.