The agricultural and horticultural businesses are amongst many industries that are experiencing labour shortages. Without a reliable workforce, it is difficult to survive in today’s competitive market. In order to tackle the severe labour shortage, businesses must upskill their current personnel, while also getting creative and finding ways to draw in workers from outside sources.
The need for skilled and reliable workers in the agriculture and horticulture industry is greater than ever. As technological advancements in the industry increase and new regulations and safety standards become increasingly stringent, businesses must adapt quickly or be left behind. This is why it is important for agricultural and horticultural businesses to ‘upskill and open their doors’ to tackle this serious labour shortage.
Agricultural and Horticultural Labour Shortage
The labour shortage in the agricultural and horticultural industries is due in large part to the increased costs associated with safety regulations, as well as the aging population. An aging population means that experienced workers are retiring and there are fewer available personnel to take their place. Additionally, the costs associated with safety regulations and technological advancements have increased, making it tougher for businesses to turn a profit while still employing a large number of personnel.
Finding and Upskilling Current Personnel
One way to address the labour shortage is to focus on upskilling current personnel. By making sure that personnel are well-versed in the latest technologies and safety regulations, businesses can make sure that they have a reliable and knowledgeable workforce. Additionally, it is important to provide tangible incentives that motivate personnel, such as increased salaries and bonuses.
Utilizing Existing Resources
Another way to address labour shortages is to make use of existing resources. For example, businesses can partner with local universities or technical schools in order to attract students who may be interested in landing a job in the agriculture or horticulture sector. Additionally, businesses can partner with local governments or NGOs in order to provide support to migrant workers and refugees, who often have a hard time finding jobs due to language and cultural barriers.
Technology-based solutions can also be used to combat the labour shortage in the agriculture and horticultural industries. For example, businesses can integrate automated systems that can help reduce the number of personnel needed to perform certain tasks. Additionally, businesses can use mobile apps to keep track of the number of staff on a shift and determine which personnel are available when needed.
Implementing Long-Term Solutions
In order to truly tackle the labour shortage in the agricultural and horticultural industries, businesses must implement long-term solutions that appeal to the target audience. For example, businesses can expand their recruitment process to include other demographics, such as minorities and women. Additionally, businesses can upskill their personnel in order to increase the number of skilled and experienced workers in the industry.
Incentivizing talent is also a key way to address the labour shortage in the agricultural and horticultural industries. To do this, businesses should focus on:
- Providing competitive salaries
- Creating a supportive and inclusive work environment
- Offering attractive benefits packages
- Motivating staff with bonuses and rewards
By offering incentives to talented workers, businesses can attract more of the best personnel to their organization.
Retaining Talented Workers
Another way to tackle the labour shortage in the agricultural and horticultural industries is to focus on retaining talented workers. This can be done through continuous feedback and regular training sessions. Additionally, businesses can create a positive work environment where employees feel valued and respected. By focusing on retention, businesses can ensure that they have a reliable and skilled workforce that is motivated to succeed.
Opening the Doors to Labour Migration
One way to address the labour shortage in the agricultural and horticultural industries is to open the doors to labour migration. This can be done through the use of visas and other legal measures that allow workers from other countries to work in the industry. By bringing in skilled workers from outside sources, agricultural and horticultural businesses can ensure that they have access to the manpower they need in order to remain competitive in the market.
The agricultural and horticultural industries are facing serious labour shortages, and it is up to businesses to find ways to tackle this issue. In order to address the labour shortage, businesses must ‘upskill and open their doors’ to personnel from outside sources. This can be done by focusing on upskilling current personnel, utilizing existing resources, implementing long-term solutions, and incentivizing talent. Additionally, businesses can open the doors to labour migration in order to draw in workers from outside sources. By taking all of these steps, agricultural and horticultural businesses can ensure that they maintain a reliable and skilled workforce that is capable of competing in the market.
The Future of Agriculture and Horticulture:
Businesses Must ‘Upskill and Open Their Doors’ to Tackle Labour Shortages
Agriculture and horticulture businesses across the UK are facing an unprecedented labour shortage – and they must take action now to counter the problem and equip their industry for the future.
The UK government recently released the ‘Agriculture and Horticulture Labour Market Survey’ which revealed that demand for labour currently greatly outstrips supply, with only 44% of vacant jobs in the sector filled in 2017. The survey also found that recruitment problems seemed to be worse in smaller operations, such as family businesses.
The report identifies a number of factors contributing to the labour shortage, including Brexit uncertainty, insufficient access to training and development opportunities and lack of engagement with the younger generations.
Given the urgent need to address this pressing issue, industry experts have united in calling for businesses to ‘upskill and open their doors’ in order to boost the number of workers available. This means taking clear steps to create an environment in which workers can reach their full potential and be better equipped to face modern-day challenges.
For starters, businesses should work to develop an apprenticeship program specifically tailored to their sector. Apprenticeships can help to attract younger generations by providing them with structured training and hands-on experience. Companies can also take advantage of the Tech Partnership’s agricultural sector network to ensure apprentices receive the skills and qualifications they need to succeed.
In addition, businesses should look for ways to improve their recruitment process, including introducing digital elements such as video application systems, which can be more welcoming for younger potential workers. It is also important to focus on creating an environment that is safe, comfortable, and provides long-term career prospects.
Finally, open-mindedness towards new and innovative methods of production, such as automation and big data, should be encouraged. This can improve yields while reducing the reliance on labour.
The future of agriculture and horticulture heavily relies on businesses taking the initiative to upskill and open their doors. Without immediate action, the sector will continue to face labour shortages and be unable to develop and grow.