Figures published recently by the Chartered Management Institute show that 85 per cent of British managers think the government should provide tax breaks for investment in the skills of their workforce. Managers are clear that ongoing skills development will be key for Britain's economic recovery, but are no longer able to support it without more government help.
The data reveals that managers recognise that cuts in skills development will negatively affect future employee performance, but they have had little choice given the current climate.
Lord John Eatwell, chief economist at the Chartered Management Institute, says: 'The positive, 'can do' approach of British managers should be cherished. Our research shows that despite the financial gloom, managers' long-term outlook remains optimistic. Business managers are convinced that a skilled workforce will be an integral part of the recovery process, and are recommending that, especially in these difficult times, government should provide further financial support for skills development and training. This would be an investment in a competitive future, and should be a priority for the recovery programme embodied in the Budget.'
Ruth Spellman, Chief Executive of the Chartered Management Institute added: 'The government needs to take decisive action to 'invest in recovery' in the Chancellor's Budget this week. The CMI Economic Outlook survey shows that managers strongly favour tax breaks as a vehicle to stimulate investment and recovery and whilst the CMI supports other measures such as deferred tax payments and increases in capital allowances, we know that skills will be a critical constraint as soon as the economy picks up. Action is needed now.'
The Economic Outlook Survey, which is conducted by the Chartered Management Institute on a six-monthly basis, surveys British managers across all industry sectors and examines their views on the economy and its impact on their organisations.
Despite obvious financial difficulties, British managers remain optimistic about their long-term prospects, and are confident of recovery. Interestingly, around 10 percent of managers across all industry sectors expect the recession to have a positive impact on their business, indicative that a number are approaching the downturn from an alternative perspective.