Our current laissez faire approach to skills – leaving employers to their own devices – simply isn’t fit for purpose. If this country is to thrive in tomorrow’s global economy and if we are to build a fairer and more equal society, then we have to change.
Although there may be a few welcome signs of recovery around, our economy remains smaller than it was before the crash. And the turbulence of the past five years has further undermined our poor skills record. According to the 2011 National Employer Skills Survey, nearly half of the UK workforce received no training from their employer. This is a shockingly big jump from the 37 per cent figure seen before the slump.