Brexit has increased challenges in finding qualified workers for retail jobs.

A report by the digital manager of retail, Fourth’s latest data shows people making career changes, a lack of correctly skilled employees and burnout/poor mental health are the main reasons for the shortage.

Forty-seven percent of clothing businesses said this was their main concern, as the holiday season rounds the corner.

Grocers also said they found the current skills shortage a challenge, with some businesses saying employees’ salary expectations were too high.

Employers felt these expectations are a direct result of the job insecurity and mental health issues employees faced last year.

Retail workers are looking for more stability and safety in their work and higher pay is part of this.

Retail leaders said their top operational challenges for 2022 are also linked to hiring and retention.

Thirty four percent said retaining their best employees would be a top priority next year.

But, Fourth said, these concerns were mainly from businesses with smaller teams – between 500 and a thousand.

Larger businesses were more concerned about stock, salary, and scheduling challenges overall.

Responding to the data, Sebastien Sepierre, Managing Director – EMEA, Fourth, said:

“The data shows that retail leaders in the UK are continuing to feel the impacts of the pandemic and Brexit when it comes to talent planning and overall workforce management.”