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Fears of talent drain in North WalesApril 19, 2012

According to 83% of leading representatives from the public sector, businesses and not-for-profit organisations polled during Spotlight North Wales 2011 North Wales is suffering from a talent drain.

· 92% of delegates surveyed believe North Wales needs a more diversified economy as the region is too reliant on the power industry and public sector for employment

· Shaping the Future - Significant investment from the European Union, Welsh Government, Anglesey and Gwynedd Councils and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority secured by Menter Môn to help address challenges facing the region

North Wales could be suffering from acute talent drain according to 83% of leading representatives from the public sector, businesses and not-for-profit organisations polled by Shaping the Future at Spotlight North Wales event 2011. Talented, highly skilled individuals are relocating from the region for employment opportunities elsewhere in Wales, the UK and internationally.

There is a concern that North Wales is currently failing to attract a sufficiently diverse range of industries to ensure sustainable long term employment growth and security in the region. Nine out of ten (92%) of delegates surveyed believe North Wales needs a more diversified economy because the region is too reliant on the power industry and public sector for employment.

A lack of knowledge and awareness of the region was cited by a quarter (25%) of respondents as one of the biggest barriers to attracting inward investment to North Wales. One in five of those surveyed (21%) cited the level of competition for external investment from other areas in the UK and abroad. A lack of sufficient indigenous skills, which could be attributed to an ongoing talent drain, was identified by 17% of those surveyed as the greatest blockage to securing inward investment.

More than a third (34%) believe that improving and accurately tailoring the skills of the indigenous workforce to the needs of businesses with funds for investment would be the most beneficial move to attracting inward investment. Almost a fifth (17%) wanted to see greater support from the Welsh Government and 17% of respondents believe employing business champions to promote the region would be beneficial in attracting investment.

Judy Craske, Project Director, Shaping The Future commented: "It is worrying that there is a perception of a talent drain from North Wales and that barriers remain to attracting inward investment to the region. Action is required to address these issues, which is one of the reasons why Shaping the Future, a major regional transformation programme has been launched. Shaping the Future aims to help secure the future of the North West Wales economy by expanding opportunities for people employed in the Welsh nuclear power industry. Shaping the Future's goal is to create sustainable economic diversity across the region by putting human development at the heart of economic success and encouraging inward investment, business relocation and entrepreneurship."

You can read this article on the HR Review website here.