Author Archives: Jordan Hatfield


If you’re suffering from staff shortages, struggling to recruit new people to operate your machinery and run your manufacturing process, you are not alone. This is a common problem among companies we have spoken to, and for many others across the UK.

British firms are struggling to recruit

According to a survey from the British Chambers of Commerce for Q1 2022, about 4 in 5 firms had trouble finding new staff. Among the most likely firms to report this difficulty are those in the manufacturing industry, with 80% experiencing recruitment issues.

These businesses also reported a number of issues contributing to their recruitment problem – for example, COVID-19, greater wage competition, and foreign workers being less available nowadays.

Employment has fallen

According to an article from the House of Commons Library, examining the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on UK industries, employment had fallen by 9% in manufacturing by December 2021 since pre-pandemic levels. At the beginning of the pandemic, job vacancies were cut in half, but since then they have increased dramatically and reached over 65% higher than pre-pandemic levels.

The Institute for Employment Studies blames these labour shortages mostly on a growth in economic inactivity. There are more people now who are not working nor looking for work. There is also, as many businesses have said, a shortage of foreign workers in the UK. A lot of EU nationals, due to COVID-19 and Brexit combined, have returned to their countries of origin.

What can you do?

With this in mind, how can businesses like yours cope with this strain in the workforce? By simplifying your manufacturing process and reducing your company’s needs for manual labour. With the right machine planning software, you won’t need to find as many workers to run your manufacturing process anyway.

To keep your productivity up despite staff shortages, our MachinePlan Management System (MMS) will improve your machine planning process and help your existing team to optimise production.