There has been a significant drop in the number of EU workers looking for jobs in the UK. A clear reason for this is obvious, with the decrease correlating with the timing of the Brexit decision of June 2016. Searches for jobs in the UK by workers from EU countries has plummeted by as much as 40% in some member states, according to recent research carried out by CV Library.

Which countries have seen the biggest difference?

Since voting to leave the EU, the number of workers looking for roles in the UK from countries such as Belgium, Slovenia and the Netherlands has dropped substantially:

  • Belgium – decreased by 48%.
  • Slovenia – decreased by 27%.
  • Netherlands – decreased by 22%.
  • Romania – decreased by 20%.

These figures clearly highlight the current concerns of EU workers surrounding the Brexit process. Future employment uncertainty is deterring candidates from applying for roles they would have applied for previously. A major reason for the concerns of EU workers is how Britain’s immigration system could work once the process of Brexit starts to gather pace.

What problems could this cause for the UK?

However, a lack of EU workers entering the UK to fill job roles could prove problematic. One such problem could be labour shortages for lower skilled jobs. It has been claimed that the government will accept candidates who are deemed to have a high skill level. On the other hand, workers for lower skilled roles may not be allowed to stay or work in the country.

Gethin Roberts, managing director at Drivers Direct, emphasised the potential difficulties by confirming that 30% of his drivers are from the EU. Furthermore, he knows of some companies where 70% of their drivers are from EU countries. Here lies the significant risk to the UK. Without such workers, various positions will become vacant, posing a challenge of whether they can be filled. If not, significant shortages will begin to emerge.

Sources: The Telegraph & Recruiter