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Cath Everett

Sift Media

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

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Lack of workplace training ‘boosts UK inequality’


A trade union-based learning and skills organisation has called on employers to provide their entire workforce with learning and development opportunities in order to boost motivation and retention rates and cut sickness absence.

Unionlearn, which is part of union umbrella organisation, the TUC, cited "shocking" statistics from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills‘ Employer Skills Survey 2012, which revealed that a huge two out of five UK employers failed to provide their staff with any training at all last year.
This meant meant that 13 million or 46% of all workers across the country received absolutely no learning and development support. According to Frances O’Grady, the TUC’s deputy general secretary, one of the problems was that resources were increasingly being focused on particular groups such as high-flyers.
She told delegates at a seminar on Friday: "Access to learning is an equality issue, and the barriers to learning people face go a long way to explaining why this country remains such an unequal place."
But regardless of age, race, gender, class, sexuality or any disability, "each and every worker should enjoy an equal chance to refresh their skills or learn something new at work", O’Grady added.
But there was also an economic case to be made for training provision. "Unlock the talents and skills of your workforce, let them learn and you will be repaid by increased motivation, retention rates and lower sickness levels, not to mention a better skilled workforce," O’Grady said.
Author Profile Picture
Cath Everett

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more from Cath Everett

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