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UK recovery could be affected by lack of investment in training.

A sharp drop in training is putting organisations at risk of stagnating, losing top talent and falling behind the competition, according to leading assessment and development consultancy, a&dc.

This comes in light of research by think-tank IPPR for the US bank JPMorgan, which found that UK businesses suffered a drop in training four times greater than any other European country during the recession, leading to a skills deficiency that threatens to hold back recovery.

An analysis by The UK Commission for Employment and Skills also found that only two in three employers provided any training whatsoever and the annual total they spent on this had fallen by £2.4bn since 2011.

However, more organisations will need to utilise training during this time of recovery if they are to get the most from their available talent and remain competitive, says Pip Clarke, Business Development Director at a&dc:

“This research is concerning to say the least. Training and development is a key part of an employee’s work cycle and directly impacts staff retention, motivation and a company’s competitive advantage, so it’s surprising to see such poor levels of uptake. As businesses increasingly look to bolster their headcount in order to grow, valuable time and money is being wasted if they’re not effectively assessing and developing the talent they already have.

“Companies need to recognise that, in many instances, the best way to utilise talent and increase output or efficiency is to target the right development for staff”. It costs far more to recruit new professionals than it does to develop your existing workforce and this is something a lot of businesses should start to consider. The lack of training at many organisations is also potentially damaging in terms of staff engagement. Increasingly career development is the reason that staff decide to move on, and so without the proper opportunity to develop, talent will begin to look elsewhere and we could soon begin to see these businesses struggling to hang on to their top professionals.”