The CBI has warned that it could take up to to years before staff shortages can be resolved due to Brexit and Covid.
The CBI said that labour shortages extends beyond the lack of HGV drivers which has caused food shortages across the UK.
The CBI’s director general Tony Danker has now called on the government to help ease the crisis.
Danker said, “In the UK, many overseas workers left during the pandemic, affecting sectors including hospitality, logistics and food processing, and new immigration rules make replacing those who left more complex.
“The Government’s ambition that the UK economy should become more high-skilled and productive is right, but implying that this can be achieved overnight is simply wrong, and a refusal to deploy temporary and targeted interventions to enable economic recovery is self-defeating.
“The CBI has heard from companies actively cutting capacity because they can’t meet demand, like the hoteliers limiting the number of bookable rooms because they don’t have enough housekeeping staff and can’t get linen laundered.
“Meanwhile, some restaurant owners have had to choose between lunchtime and evening services when trying to make the most of summer. It’s also visible to consumers when lead-in times for purchases like kitchens or furniture double.
“Employers back existing Government schemes to get people back into work, and businesses are already spending significant amounts on training, but that takes time to yield results, and some members suggest it could take two years rather than a couple of months for labour shortages to be fully eliminated.”
A Government spokesman said they are monitoring the labour supply and are “working with sector leaders to understand how we can best ease particular pinch points.”
He added, “Our Plan for Jobs is helping people across the country retrain, build new skills and get back into work.
“The Government encourages all sectors to make employment more attractive to UK domestic workers through offering training, careers options, wage increases and investment.”