The Great Debate UK
– Charlotte Hogg is Managing Director of Experian UK & Ireland. The opinions expressed are her own. –
Recent news that UK unemployment has risen above 2.5 million has refocused attention on the anticipated reduction in public sector employment levels. The Office of Budget Responsibility now expects 330,000 public sector job losses over the next four years, far fewer than it forecast in June, but with the unemployment rate already running at 7.9 percent there are those who doubt the private sector’s ability to fill the employment void.
The question at the centre of the debate is whether the UK is currently experiencing a jobless recovery. It is clear that the private sector needs to create employment – and fast – if long-term economic recovery is to be achieved. As small and medium enterprises make up 99 percent of the private sector, the bulk of this burden is likely to lie with them.
The impact of austerity measures have thus far been felt most keenly in the North East, South West and East of England. However, Experian has conducted research that identifies a healthy number of private sector firms in these regions that have the potential to grow quickly and with the right support could make a big difference in stimulating regional employment. Were they to realise their potential, these small businesses could between them reverse the fortunes of these regions.
- Martin Warner, chief executive officer and co-founder of Talkbiznow, an interactive business social network. The views expressed are his own. -
If anyone had any doubts about the growing importance of social networks they surely passed in 2009 when Twitter burst into the mass consciousness.