The number of EU citizens seeking work in Britain has dropped by more than a third since Brexit, according to a study exposing the impact on UK employers as they struggle to recruit.
Figures from the jobs website actually show that UK job searches by EU-based job seekers dropped 36% in May from 2019 median levels. Low-paying jobs in hospitality, the care industry and warehouses recorded the biggest drops at 41%.
In a report suggesting that strict post-Brexit immigration rules are having a distinct impact beyond the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic, the sharp decline in interest among EU job seekers was not replicated in other countries. .
Clicks on job advertisements from non-EU countries dropped by just 1%, and searches in Ireland, whose citizens retain the right to live and work in the UK after Brexit, dropped by a similar amount during the same period.
The snapshot comes as UK companies struggle to find enough staff to fill a growing number of vacancies after hospitality venues and retail stores were allowed to reopen.
Business leaders have warned that a lack of overseas workers is likely to slow the UK’s economic recovery from Covid-19 and could translate into higher prices for goods and services as staff shortages force them to offer high wages for attract new recruits.
Government-backed studies have shown that EU migrants do not suppress the wages of UK workers, and official labor market figures have yet to show a materially higher wage growth rate in 2021 than usual, but Companies in some sectors say the lack of EU migrants is leading them to pay to attract British workers in their place.
Tim Martin, the head of JD Wetherspoon who supports Brexit, has called on the government to launch a visa scheme for EU workers to help bars and restaurants hire more staff.
About An estimated 1.3 million non-British workers have left the UK since the end of 2019. as many returned to their country of birth to watch the pandemic at home. Ongoing travel controls and public health risk continue to discourage some overseas workers, but Indeed said Brexit had played a role as well.
He said interest from non-EU job seekers, led by Commonwealth nations such as India and the former British territory of Hong Kong, was increasing but not enough to offset falling interest from the EU. .
Official figures have shown a reduction in the number of EU citizens coming to Britain since the Brexit vote in 2016, but there has been a steady increase in non-EU workers arriving instead.
Indeed, British economist Jack Kennedy said employers in higher-paid sectors such as technology, science and engineering were managing to offset the drop in interest from job seekers in the EU with staff from the rest of the world.
“But the lowest paid jobs are not getting the same attention from foreign workers as they were just two years ago. It means that domestic workers can be required to fill in the gaps, ”he said.
“However, with many industries, including hospitality, already struggling to recruit all the staff they need, higher wages may be required to attract UK workers to fill those positions.”