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Workers must retain “pandemic spirit” to plug skills gaps

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37% of respondents working in a completely different industry

According to a poll by recruitment specialists, Pertemps, more than a third of workers have switched industries as a result of COVID-19.

The survey showed 37% of respondents were now working in a completely different industry to the one they were in when the lockdown hit in March 2020.

The results also showed that 38% of respondents were still with the same company, indicating that job stability remains crucial for some workers.

Of those who stayed in the same sector, only 16% of respondents said they had changed positions in the past three years, reflecting that career movements within a business had been slow as a result of the pandemic.

Cat Brown, Director at Warwickshire-based Pertemps, said: “The results raise some interesting questions about how the pandemic has affected people’s mentalities and attitudes towards their careers. Did the pandemic prompt a third of people to try something new, or were they forced to reinvent themselves due to circumstances beyond their control?

“What we saw was people suddenly learning new skills – reinventing themselves and adapting to the situation and what was needed. It was like a collective ‘Pandemic spirit’ of ‘can do’.

“The reality now is that we are facing a world where we need that same attitude and approach to continue because we have significant skills gaps across all sectors. We need people to be willing to look at work in new ways in order to keep pace with the current jobs market.”

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