New research from Be the Business, the campaign to boost business performance, reveals serious issues facing firms as they struggle to recruit and keep hold of talent.
This is having a major knock on effect on productivity, morale and profitability.
Conversely, companies with an engaged workforce perform 147 per cent better than their peers. Be the Business wants to help SMEs improve productivity thus releasing an additional £130bn into the economy.
The results are stark in the North West where 25 per cent of SMEs reported that employee issues such as recruitment, retainment and skills deficits hit their businesses and 39 per cent of businesses were expecting to recruit again in the months leading up to July 2019. 63 per cent reported that they struggled to recruit appropriate staff and 45 per cent had lost staff that they would like to have kept.
Tony Danker, chief executive at Be the Business, said: “For years the solution to growth was to hire more people. With the labour market tight, SMEs don’t have that option and have to look at how they can inspire and motivate the employees they have.”