The standard of school-leavers in the workplace is said to highlight the concern displayed by many at the state of the UK’s education system and the shocking 1 in 5 ‘Neets’ in the 16-24 age group in Great Britain.
A Morrisons store in Manchester were forced to send over half of its new employees back into training to learn basic literacy, numeracy and social skills, the human resources director of the store stated that the education system had ‘failed them’. Over half of the entire workforce starting work at the store had left school without a single GCSE.
The huge problem of young people who are ‘Not in education, employment or training’ is not helped by this, apparent, lack of even basic workplace skills and is one of the major factors in firms being forced to recruit migrant workers who do meet the standard.
Users on The Student Room had a lot to say on this recent story.
One user felt that it was a company’s duty to train their employees:
‘Shouldn’t a company expect to train its staff? That’s what they used to do. I had a co-worker in my last job who was in her 60s. When she first started in retail they weren’t even allowed near the customers for 2 years because they were being trained up.’
Others felt that the education system alone couldn’t be blamed for the lack of skills shown in their employees:
‘The ‘basic skills’ listed such as eye-contact/stacking shelves are 95% parents responsbilities, 5% primary school responsibilities. To blame the government is just wrong.’
Morrisons is one of many major employers to comment on the low standard of school-leavers entering the workplace, Tesco’s Terry Leahy commented on how, despite the money spent on schools, they are still woefully low and expressed how he felt that ‘Employers like us are left to pick up the pieces’. The results of a survey on big employers recently showed that thousands of young people interviewed lack even vital employability skills.