The Open University Business Barometer 2023


We wanted to share some valuable information with you regarding the recently launched 2023 Business Barometer, a joint effort by the Open University and the British Chambers of Commerce. You can download the report here.

The latest Business Barometer report by the Open University and the British Chambers of Commerce reveals that a significant 73% of organisations in the UK are currently facing a challenge with skills availability. This remains a major concern for employers.

The annual report serves as an insightful assessment of the UK’s skills landscape. It highlights that despite the persistent skills shortage, more than half (54%) of organisations do not have any specific initiatives, skills programs, or workplace adjustments in place to cater to specific talent pools. This includes underrepresented groups such as individuals with disabilities or those from diverse ethnic backgrounds.

The report indicates that employers are missing out on untapped potential and a chance to nurture talent internally. This is particularly crucial as 42% of organisations have struggled to fill positions due to a lack of suitable applicants.

In addition to these findings, the report, which surveyed over 1,250 employers, includes:

  • Detailed analysis of the size, nature, causes, and impacts of the skills shortage.
  • Data encompassing various sectors, business sizes, and regions across the UK.
  • Insights into employers’ strategic planning to address their skills gaps.
  • Examination of learning and development plans among employers.
  • Case studies showcasing innovative initiatives that connect organizations with new talent pools.

If you would like any more information please contact our Head of Policy, Sean Rose