UK Immigration: UK Firms Rely on Migrant Workers to Grow

Today, the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD) have published findings from a survey they conducted which involved 1,000 employers participating. The study found that the majority of employers rely on migrants to fill vacancies due to the experience and commitment migrants show. As a result young British workers are struggling to compete with oversea workers.

CIPD: Fast growing Businesses in the UK prefer to Recruit EU Workers and older UK Workers

According to CIPD, who interviewed 1,000 employers over half of them (51%) have admitted that their businesses have grown due to the hiring of EU migrants. In contrast, only 39% of firms who do not hire migrants have said that their businesses have grown over the last two years. The survey also found:

  • Fast growing businesses in the UK have suggested that they prefer to recruit migrants from across the EU and older UK workers over hiring individuals under the age of 25 years old;
  • 60% of migrants, predominately from Latvia and Poland who are in low skilled jobs are graduates;
  • An estimated 20% of Britain born workers are in low skilled jobs; and
  • Only 12% of employers admitted to employing migrants because they have lower expectations about pay and employment conditions.

Peter Cheese, Chief Executive of the CIPD commented on the findings:

“This is a highly charged political issue, but our research shows that many of the negative assumptions about immigration are untrue. Employers are making rational decisions to employ more experienced and qualified workers from overseas over less experienced UK workers, or are hiring migrants because there are simply not enough applicants in the local labour market. What the vast majority of employers are not doing is hiring migrants to lower the wage bill or offset the need to train the workforce.”

Mr Cheese also stated that employers recruiting migrant workers are more likely to invest in work experience, internships and apprenticeships. He added:

“The question therefore is not whether ambitious employers who are recruiting migrant workers should be restricted in their efforts to grow their businesses and contribute to the UK economy. It is a broader issue about how do we increase the number of firms looking to grow the capabilities of their workforces and provide more opportunities for job progression. We need to rebalance our jobs economy, to reduce the large proportion of low-skilled jobs, and to invest in a broader skilled more competitive workforce.”

EU Commissioner: Workers from EU are Complementary to UK Workers

Earlier this month,  EU Commissioner Laszlo Andor urged Britain to ‘stop moaning’ about European migrants in the UK and start facilitating their arrival, along with opening their eyes to see the benefits that Eastern Europeans bring to the UK. He acknowledged that the EU single market would result in more jobs and better working conditions for British people. Andor also went on to speak about the benefits of free movement of workers to and from other EU countries. He spoke in terms of more job opportunities, and to employers, in terms of addressing labour shortages and skills gaps. Mobile EU workers usually pay more in tax and social security contributions than they receive in benefits. As a result UK workers have to pay less tax than they would in the absence of workers from other EU countries.

He stated:

“Workers from other EU countries also tend to be complementary to UK workers, doing different jobs, rather than taking jobs from Brits. Outright competition for the same job is more the exception than the rule.”

Successfully applying for an Work Permit & Accession Worker Card

UK employers wishing to hire Bulgarian and Romanian nationals must currently apply for a work permit. If this is approved, nationals from these countries must apply for an accession worker card.  Bulgarian and Romanian nationals and their family members who are considering moving to the UK, should seek legal advice from expert UK Immigration Lawyers regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority to ensure that they know their options and how they can proceed to the next steps. Feel free to contact us to discuss your immigration situation and we will assess your case and provide you with options of visiting or settling in the UK.

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