Scottish Employer Skills Survey 2020

Results from the Scottish Employer Skills Survey 2020.

Scottish Employer Skills Survey 2020 - Infographic

Employer Characteristics

Small employers with 2 to 4 employees make up 50% of establishments and employ   8% of the workforce.

The largest sectors of the Scottish economy are Business Services (20% of establishments) and Wholesale & Retail (19%).

Vacancies and SSVs

11% of employers had at least one vacancy at the time of the survey…
…and 3% had at least one skill-shortage vacancy.

21% of all vacancies were skill-shortage vacancies – that is, they were hard to fill due to a lack of skills, knowledge or experience among applicants.

This was having an impact on 95% of affected employers – most commonly increasing workload for other staff.

Internal Skills Challenge

12% of employers had a skills gap within their workforce, and 4% of all employees had gap(s) in their skills.

33% of employers reported skill under-use.

74% of employers anticipated a need to upskill their staff in the coming year.

Training and Workforce Development

59% of employers had provided any training to staff in the previous year:

50% on the job

35% off the job

Overall, 45% of employers would like to have provided more training, but 55% were in “training equilibrium”.

Response to Covid-19

Overall, 76% of employers had accessed government support (65% furlough, 50% other).

12% made redundancies.


7% were classed as “High Performance Working employers”.



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