A GROWING skills shortage in the workplace has been uncovered in the latest business index by the Federation of Small Businesses.

Almost one third (29.9 per cent) of those surveyed report skills shortages as hampering growth, with construction and computer services particularly hard hit.

Simon Williams, the Federation of Small Businesses North Yorkshire Chairman, pictured above, said: “In North Yorkshire we are working hard with partners such as North Yorkshire Business Education Partnership, Young Enterprise and Schools and Colleges to ensure that enterprise is embedded in the curriculum.

"However, the solutions are not across the board and we must work hard to ensure all out Young People leave school work ready."

To address the issue the FSB is calling for the business and education community to work more closely together to ensure young people are ‘work ready’ and understand the demands of the world of work.

The Federation says employability skills must be embedded from an early age, and believes the labour market has changed dramatically in recent years and businesses are adapting to that change but the education system needs to catch up.

Despite the challenges around skills, the survey of almost 2,500 businesses shows confidence at a record high with year-on-year gains seen across the whole of the UK.