View from the Chamber – week 27

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As a Chamber of Commerce we represent businesses and organisations across many sectors, supporting and lobbying on their behalf as well as making representations to key departments, leaders and representatives of the Scottish Government, for example.

Scottish employers are feeling the impact of skills shortages with poor staff wellbeing, increased workload and decreased profitability, says a new British Chambers of Commerce business barometer published last week.

Key findings shared in this latest report provide a stark view of the pressures that businesses are facing, both locally and nationally, as well as the cost of living crisis and rising fuel prices.

Eighty-four per cent of Scottish organisations say the impact of skills shortages is causing increased workload on other staff, while 77% are seeing reduced output, profitability, or growth, according to new data from The Open University and the British Chambers of Commerce.

Seventy per cent of survey respondents in Scotland agreed that their organisation is currently facing skills shortages, up from 62% in the 2021 Business Barometer report.

Recruitment and retention challenges are another significant impact on businesses with a growing number of job roles advertised throughout Lochaber in the past few months. It also highlights the effect the skills shortage is having on staff morale and wellbeing, with 84% of Scottish organisations saying the impact increases workload on other staff.

Covid-19 continues to impact workforce recovery at the moment, something that a rural location like Lochaber feels more so. Aberdeen Chamber commented on this report saying “skills planning has never been more important and it’s vital that policy makers, employers, our education system and training providers work meaningfully together to ensure our businesses have access to the people and skills needed to achieve our economic potential”, something that Lochaber Chamber of Commerce echoes.

You can view the full report and findings on our website by heading to www.lochaberchamber.co.uk/news