According to ONS data, the motor industry is up with hospitality and social care as the sectors with the most job vacancies. It is listed on what used to be called a ‘shortage occupation list’, which has now been renamed ‘immigration salary list’.

While job vacancies have reduced from a record high in the middle of 2022 of over 1.3m, today’s number of 898,000 remains higher than the 796,000 open positions before the pandemic in March 2020.

To solve ongoing workforce challenges, many businesses have been employing foreign-born workers, which now making up 19% of the UK workforce, double the 9% in 2004. The Resolution Foundation says, “About 90% of job growth in the last 20 years has been among people who weren’t born in the UK.”

There are currently 1.5 million people unemployed in the UK, representing approximately 4.3% of the working age population. The focus is now on encouraging those classified as inactive – those not in work or seeking work – back into the workforce.