Report calls on government to boost young people’s basic skills

According to a new report by the LifeSkills Advisory Council, young people in the West Midlands lack a range of basic skills for work.

The report ‘Improving Employability in the UK’, found that young people lack appropriate work behaviour and time management skills. 57% of SMEs had concerns they would use their mobile phones at work and 46% worried they wouldn’t be punctual.

Apprentice star Karren Brady, who chairs the LifeSkills Advisory Council, launched the report, which  calls on the government to make three policy changes in order to achieve lasting improvement in the quality of employability education and work experience available to young people so they can fulfil their potential after education.

Baroness Karren Brady said: “The report Improving Employability in the UK makes three clear asks of the government that if delivered will improve employability education and work experience so young people can gain the skills and experience they need to be successful in work. Our latest research shows young people are calling out for quality employability education and work experience. But, too often the support and access to opportunities they need doesn’t exist. This has to change so young people can fulfil their future potential.”

Ashok Vaswani, chief executive of  personal and corporate banking at Barclays, said: “We have to act so that young people can realise their ambition and be successful in the future. This is why we launched LifeSkills. So far it has helped over 649,000 young people gain employability skills. But more still has to be done which is why we’ve worked with the LifeSkills Advisory Council to develop the report Improving Employability in the UK. It summarises the actions required by Government to improve employability education and work experience for young people. We have to close the glaring gap that exists between what businesses want and the skills young people have.”