The Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE) endorses research carried out by the Confederation of British Industry and the EDI (the vocational qualifications body) that has revealed over 350 organisations are struggling to find staff with skills in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), while even more companies expect to experience staff skill shortages in the next three years.

“The government needs to do more to promote basic skills in schools. It is vital young people leave school and university with the right skills to succeed at work. It is becoming increasingly difficult to find people with the right technical or engineering skills and the new government should look to actively encourage the take up of STEM subjects in schools,” said Chris Whetnall IAgrE’s Chief Executive.

“Indeed, that one fifth of new employees receive remedial Maths/English is scandalous. In addition to promoting basic skills in schools, the government needs to seriously consider allocating more resources to the FE sector. Many colleges are insufficiently resourced to deliver the levels of technical skills required by industry.

Our members report it is increasingly difficult to recruit people with the right level of science and technology skills and as the economy recovers it is going to become even harder.

We are lagging behind other European countries so we need the Government to implement changes before we lose out to our global competitors,” added Chris. The survey found young people would definitely improve their job prospects if they studied business studies, maths, English and physics or chemistry at A-level.