It is a simple equation that says if you have the right skills you are more likely to get into the job or career you want. It is the reason why people take training, go to university, or go on apprenticeships, but on the other side of the equation are the employers who are looking for skilled employees to fill specific vacancies or roles. Imagine if you could know what skills would be required in the workplace over the next ten years – you would be able to align your own training or career path to suit. While it is said that there will be a huge shift in what work will be like in the future, we can still use some research to get a good idea what skills you may need over the next ten years – when today’s school and college students will be looking for work!
The UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) released a ‘Working Futures’ report last month, where they offered a forecast on what types of work would be on the increase between now and 2024. While there will be growth across a number of areas, over 90% of the projected growth in employment is expected to be in the private sector business and consumer services areas.
So, it seems that the private business sector and related services such as I.T. or professional services are set to be the areas where there will be the most new jobs. You can find apprenticeships in this type of work as well as looking for training and school leaver jobs if that is more your thing.
Highly skilled occupations are expected to see the largest growth, with an estimated 2 million new jobs set to be created for managers and professionals across the course of the next decade. Which begs the question whether you can afford to waste time and money at university?
Will your degree be of real use in this business-minded new world, or would you be better off looking for a relevant apprenticeship instead, allowing you to start work and gain experience on the job while you train? It is a question worth asking and, of course, it must align to your own career goals.
Engineering Skills Gap
There has also been much talk of the skills gap in engineering jobs in the UK, which has already seen a push to encourage more young people to take STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, maths) based subjects at school.
The fact is, if there are no jobs available in a certain industry you will simply be unable to find a job, forcing you to take something else for which you may not really be skilled. This is particularly galling if you have paid thousands in university tuition fees on the promise of your degree leading to a great career.
For that reason, it is always worth taking time to really think about what you hope to do with a degree once you graduate, compared to the option of a vocational route.
It is no secret that more employers are becoming aware of the benefits of hiring apprentices and being able to train their future staff in-house from the outset. Not to mention options such as sponsored degrees (where an employer pays for your tuition), and the fact that you can take an apprenticeship degree too!
Whether you take an academic or a vocational route to work, at the end you will need to find a job – so why not train for where the vacancies will be?