Employers may be wasting nearly £270 million a year on failed recruitment, according to a report from learndirect.
The report highlights how £1.16 billion is spent by employers each year trying to fill job vacancies yet around 23 per cent of these posts are recognised as ‘hard to fill’ and often need additional resources to get the right candidate.
This is despite the fact there are up to 20 people in some areas chasing each job vacancy. Research from learndirect shows many of these people remain confused about the skills and personal qualities employers are looking for.

As a result learndirect’s report – Work ready? Get fit for the job – makes ten recommendations which would improve people’s skills and help to smooth the recruitment process for employers and jobseekers while saving millions of pounds.
These recommendations include: offering young people aged 16-19 an alternative to traditional classroom-taught maths and English, including the option to study these subjects online; ensuring employers are clearer about their expectations of candidates in advertisements and job descriptions; making greater use of online recruitment to drive down costs and to deliver a more efficient recruitment process; and ensuring young people are better prepared for the workplace as well as better informed on education, training and employment options post-16.

learndirect is also taking to the streets over the next month to highlight the issue and help people think about the skills they have and how they can best showcase them to potential employers. Using street theatre learndirect will be explaining to people how to write CVs and job applications, plan for an interview and build confidence.

The report and street theatre activity are part of the learndirect Make it Count campaign, which aims to encourage people to learn new skills and get the qualifications they need to improve their job prospects.

Jane Ellis, employability lead at learndirect said: “With the toughest employment conditions in 30 years it’s incredible money is being wasted finding the right people for vacancies. With a bit of thought and a few simple changes, getting people into the right jobs would be easier for everyone and much cheaper.

“Some of our recommendations may take time to realise. The unemployment figures reinforce how people need help now which is why we’ve created our street theatre roadshow. We want to go out and give people a few hints and tips on how they can improve their job prospects. There’ll be staff there from learndirect centres who will be able to talk to people and make sure they are getting all the help they can in finding a job.”
John Salt, Website Director at Totaljobs said: “In today’s competitive employment market Totaljobs welcomes any initiatives which provide people with practical hints and tips to help with their jobs search. Increasingly its becoming more and more apparent that recruiters are looking for more than just a bland template CV. What they really want to see is examples of what that person can bring to an organisation. Anything that helps people to realise and showcase that can therefore only be seen as a good thing.”