The retail sector in Yorkshire and Humberside employs 236,849 people, which accounts for nearly 10% of the total retail workforce in England. 87% of retailers in the region employ 10 people or less. Between 2001-2006, there was a 5% decrease in the number of businesses that employ 10 people or less and an 8.5% decline medium-sized businesses (11-49). Businesses that employ over 200 employees have also seen a decrease of nearly 7%, contributing to an overall retail establishment decline in the region of 2%.
Workforce key statistics:
- 43% of the workforce is employed full-time
- 64% is female
- Only 38% of managers and senior officials have NVQ level 3 or higher qualification. 35% of this occupational group have a below NVQ level 2 qualification.
- Staff qualified below NVQ level 2 account for 34% of sales and customer service staff and 38% of elementary occupations. 17% of employees in elementary occupations have no qualifications.
- In Yorkshire and Humberside, 13% of employers have at least one vacancy, which is below the English average. 3% of employers in the region report hard-to-fill vacancies and 1% report vacancies resulting from skills shortages.
- Of the retail businesses in Yorkshire and Humberside reporting hard-to-fill vacancies, 69% of vacancies were for sales and customer service roles, 5% elementary occupations and 5% managerial roles.
- The percentage of employers in Yorkshire and Humberside reporting hard-to-fill vacancies in sales and customer service staff is 9% above the English average.
- Yorkshire and Humberside had the lowest number of retail employers reporting hard-to-fill vacancies in administrative roles.
- Of the companies in the Yorkshire and Humberside reporting skill shortage vacancies, 61% stated they had vacancies in sales and customer service roles, 26% skilled trades and 18% in elementary roles. There were no skill-shortage vacancies in managerial roles.
- Retail employers in Yorkshire and Humberside find customer handling (62%), written communication (50%) and management skills (50%) the most difficult to obtain from retail applicants.
Source: Yorkshire and Humberside Regional Background Brief 2008