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Government must teach vital employment skills alongside academic excellence

Government must teach vital employment skills alongside academic excellence as part of its proposals to replace GCSEs, says Adecco Group.

Andy Powell, Director of the Unlocking Britain's Potential Campaign, spearheaded by Adecco Group, Deloitte and Cisco to enhance the employability of the nation, said: “The government’s reported plan to scrap GCSEs is a bold move towards more robust educational standards. But any new education system must prepare young people with the skills they will need in the workplace. Over one in three employers (36%)* think the existing system is failing to do so.

Academic rigour alone is no longer enough to thrive in today’s workplace. We must listen to employers who are telling us that the education system should value soft skills alongside academic excellence. The government now has an unprecedented opportunity to elevate the importance of employability skills. Financial planning, communication and work experience should be a central part of schooling for all pupils – whether they study the new O-Level or CSE streams.”

In research conducted for Adecco Group’s Unlocking Britain’s Potential campaign, in partnership with Deloitte and Cisco:

Both employers (36%) and employees (52%) think the education system is failing to meet the needs of employers today

According to employers, new employees are most lacking in:

interpersonal skills (41 per cent)

critical IT skills (41 per cent)

basic literacy and numeracy skills (25 per cent)

67% of employers think there needs to be a collaborative effort between government, employers, parents and the education system to ensure those entering the workforce have the skills required by potential employers


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