The 2024 General Election and Its Impact on the Recruitment and Labour Markets

The 2024 General Election and Its Impact on the Recruitment and Labour Markets

It was announced on the 23rd of May that the 2024 General Election will be held on the 4th of July.

As the nation prepares for this, it is clear that the focus is squarely on the future of the UK’s economic growth and competitiveness. The Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) Chief Executive Neil Carberry has underscored the importance of a vibrant economy in achieving higher wages, better public services, and lower taxes in a recent blog post.

This election is a pivotal moment for the recruitment industry and the broader labour market:


Economic Growth at the Forefront

Carberry’s message is clear: a thriving economy is essential for national prosperity. The recruitment industry plays a crucial role in this by connecting talent with opportunities and helping businesses grow. The insights of recruiters, who have a front-line view of the labour market, are instrumental in shaping policies that drive economic success.


Key Themes for the Recruitment Industry

REC’s recent manifesto document, Dynamic Labour Markets for Growth, outlines four key themes that the next government should prioritise to ensure economic success:


Understanding Today’s Labor Market

·       Develop a comprehensive Workforce Plan for the UK in collaboration with businesses and employee representative bodies.

·       Conduct a Workplace Employment Relations Study (WERS) to gain deeper insights into the current labour market dynamics.

·       Recognise that diverse working methods are vital for the economic and social development of the UK.


Supporting Labor Market Transition:

·       Introduce immigration policies that support a transitioning labour market.

·       Embed Net Zero and technological changes into education systems to prepare the future workforce.

·       Establish the UK as a global leader in the safe and ethical use of AI.


Boosting Workforce Productivity and Reducing Inactivity:

·       Reform the Apprenticeship Levy within the first 100 days of the new government.

·       Expand the eligibility for 30-hours childcare entitlement to parents or carers in training or education.

·       Invest in improved local rail and bus links to enhance connectivity and access to job opportunities.

·       Increase the childcare workforce to support working families.


Regulating for a Dynamic Labor Market:

·       Introduce regulations that cover the entire labour supply chain.

·       Establish a properly resourced Single Enforcement Body (SEB) to ensure compliance with labour laws.

·       Overhaul the off-payroll working rules (IR35) to reflect the flexible nature of modern work.

·       Conduct a broad review and revision of employment laws to align with contemporary working practices.


The Stakes Are High

With the UK facing a tight labour supply, it is crucial to make the most of the available talent. Carberry warns that the cost of getting it wrong could be up to £39 billion annually in lost wages and profits – a staggering amount equivalent to two whole Elizabeth Lines.

The recruitment industry stands at the heart of this challenge. By advocating for policies that foster a flexible and dynamic labour market, recruiters can help drive economic growth and competitiveness.


The Road Ahead

As we approach the General Election, it is imperative that politicians understand and address the realities of today’s labour market. From investing in skills development and childcare to modernising regulations and supporting diverse working methods, there is much to be done.

At Eligo Recruitment, we are committed to playing our part in this journey. We believe in the power of a vibrant economy and the essential role of the recruitment industry in building a better future for all. Let’s work together to ensure that the UK’s labour market is ready for the challenges and opportunities ahead.