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TALiNT launches recruiter campaign to tackle youth jobs crisis

The UK could be on the cusp of its worst youth unemployment crisis in almost half a century, as new research shows around one in five young people furloughed during the last lockdown have since lost their jobs.

As the nation heads into another lockdown, a major report published by independent think-tank The Resolution Foundation indicates that the furlough extension to December is no help to many workers aged under 25.

Supported by the Health Foundation, the ‘Jobs, Jobs, Jobs’ report draws on a detailed online YouGov survey of 6,061 adults across the UK to analyse how the labour market has changed during the first eight months of the crisis, and the outlook for jobs over the coming months. Of all surveyed workers who have been furloughed during the pandemic, around half have returned to work, one in three are still fully or partially furloughed, and almost one in ten (9%) have lost their jobs.

The post-furloughing fall into unemployment has been most common among 18 to 24 year olds (19%), BAME workers (22%) and those previously working on insecure contracts (22%).

The Foundation adds that the scale of unemployment identified in its survey implies an unemployment rate of 7% in September – well above the latest official figures of 4.5% in the three months to August – rising to 20% among 18 to 24 year olds. This would mean the UK is already facing the highest levels of youth unemployment in four decades.

The report notes that fewer than half of those who have lost their jobs since March had found new work by September, falling to just one in three among young people, and 36% of people in hard-hit sectors like hospitality, leisure and non-food retail.

Worryingly, there is little sign that workers exiting these struggling sectors are flowing into areas of the labour market that are able to grow during this pandemic. Among those looking for work who currently or previously worked in hospitality, leisure or non-food retail, the top four job search destinations are hospitality, leisure, and non-food retail, as well as administrative positions.

Finally, the report explores how, while the initial effects of the crisis bore heavily on the youngest and lowest paid, there are some signs that labour market disruption will likely become more widespread over time.

Commenting on the findings, Kathleen Henehan, Senior Research and Policy Analyst at the Resolution Foundation, said: “The true nature of Britain’s jobs crisis is starting to reveal itself. Around one in five young people, and over one in five BAME workers, have fallen straight from furloughing into unemployment. Fewer than half of those who have lost their jobs during the pandemic have been able to find work since. This suggests that even if the public health crisis recedes in a few months’ time, Britain’s jobs crisis will be with us for far longer.”

TALiNT Partners Youth Campaign

In a move to unite leading recruiters to tackle this crisis, and demonstrate their D&I credentials, TALiNT Partners is launching a campaign with a vision to give young people (16-19 years old) from diverse backgrounds a pathway to rewarding and meaningful careers within the recruitment industry.

“This programme will leverage the co-ordinated efforts of leading recruitment companies to deliver three key goals,” said David Head, who is leading the campaign. “It will provide a long term, sustainable solution to improving diversity in the recruitment and staffing industry; it will improve employability for students from ethnically diverse and disadvantaged areas, thereby contributing to improved social mobility; and it will demonstrate to employers that the industry understands D&I and can therefore help them do the same.”

TALiNT Partners is initially identifying twenty founding partners from the industry to help shape the campaign and build a programme that brings positive change. Those interested in supporting this initiative should contact David Head at  


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