Brexit workplace skills survey report - May 2017

This is the first output from a series of surveys from learndirect to identify specific gaps in training provision which are likely to have an impact due to the UK exiting the European Union in 2019.

While no one can accurately predict what impact Brexit will have on the skill base of the UK workforce, looking into any potential shortfalls and looking for potential solutions will do no harm.

For our initial report, we asked over 14,000 businesses across the UK what they thought the key issues related to workforce skills, recruitment and staff retention were.

Report Summary

Brexit survey 2017 - reduced workplace skillsWhat was clear from our survey was that the majority of businesses are unaware of what skill shortages they can expect to face in a post Brexit UK.

On the whole, survey respondents were optimistic about the outcome of Brexit on the skill levels of their businesses.

  • 81% of our respondents thought their workforce skill levels would stay the same or grow, however;
  • 19% thought their workforce skill levels would decrease as a result of Brexit
The more negative outcomes were most clearly highlighted in the hospitality and service sectors.

brexit survey 2017 - reduced staff retentionAnalysis of the results will assist in the design of future workplace skills training provision in the UK. This will help to negate any significant workforce skills gap issues which Brexit is likely to deliver.

Since the vote to leave the EU business leaders across all sectors have voiced concerns about a potential skills shortage in the UK workforce after we leave the EU. A recent report from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) reported that half of small firms employing workers from the EU are worried that Brexit will stop them recruiting sufficiently skilled staff.

Research from IPPR suggests that Brexit has already had an impact on businesses due to factors like reduced migration and fluctuations in exchange rates.

Download the full Brexit workplace skills report



Our business Brexit survey is ongoing and we will update it periodically in the run-up to the UK leaving the European Union.

By filling in the survey you will be helping to design future workplace skills training provision in the UK.

If you would like to tell us what you think Brexit will mean to your business fill in the survey by following the link below;

Brexit workplace training survey >>