Fewer EU migrants want to
work in the UK than ever
before, says new survey

Fewer EU migrants want to work in the UK than ever before, according to a new report from recruitment agency Adecco and the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD.

They asked more than 1,000 employers, who confirmed that vacancies were becoming harder to fill by foreign workers. They concluded that the ‘sudden reversal’ in the number of EU and non-EU citizen who were willing to be in employment in this country would lead to bosses having to raise rates of pay to make jobs more attractive.

Gerwyn Davies, of the CIPD, said:

‘The data implies that the pendulum has swung away from the UK as an attractive place to live and work for non-UK-born citizens, especially non-EU citizens, during a period of strong employment growth and low unemployment.

‘This has heightened recruitment difficulties for some employers. It also underlines the risk that more non-UK-born citizens and employers will be discouraged from using the post-Brexit system if more support is not provided and it is not made simpler, fairer and more affordable; especially for lower-skilled roles.

‘Against the backdrop of a tight labour market, failure to do this will heighten recruitment difficulties and could lead to negative consequences for existing staff, such as higher workloads, and loss of business or orders for firms.’

Alex Fleming of the Adecco Group added:

The labour market in the UK is tight and this research is reporting increasingly high levels of recruitment and retention difficulties.

‘While the data is not showing wages rising across the board, we are regularly seeing this pressure being exerted in the recruitment space.’

Ironically, this data has been published at the same time as another survey shows that half of British people believe that it is good for our economy to have migrants from other countries living and working here.

In 2011, only 25 per cent of those asked believed that the economy was made better by the inclusion of foreign workers. Now the figure stands at 50 per cent, despite the Brexit referendum of 2016 during which some of the rhetoric centred on concerns about immigration.

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