Ben Willmott, head of public policy at the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development said:

"We welcome the extra support announced to help people find work and boost training by extending schemes, such as Kickstart and the apprentice incentive payments for employers, into 2022. 
"However there do need to be other significant changes to skills policy, to really have an impact on skills and access to work. Improving the quality of careers advice for young people, reforming the Apprenticeship Levy and increasing investment to support life-long learning are also key areas for review and much needed investment. 

"The Chancellor’s speech also left a large question mark over how the Government plans to help the UK transition to a high-wage, high skill economy and reduce the need for immigration to address rising skill and labour shortages.

"Greater investment in R&D, infrastructure and in high tech industries is part of the answer, but this needs to be supported by wider adoption of technology by employers across the economy supported by improvements in management capability and workforce skills development. 

"There is a real need to build on the Plan for Growth to develop a long-term strategy that goes beyond limited small-scale interventions to one that seeks to enhance the business environment and supports business productivity improvement at a regional, sectoral and national level."

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