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Workers in the dark over Brexit

Workers in the dark over Brexit

A survey of 4,015 members of the British public commissioned by KPMG reveals how few UK businesses are talking to their employees about the implications of Brexit

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A survey of 4,015 members of the British public commissioned by KPMG reveals how few UK businesses are talking to their employees about the implications of Brexit - and how only a minority of workers believe their employers are prepared for the changes ahead.

 

Just 38% of employees said their employer had explained the implications of Brexit at work and only 39% reported their employer is adequately prepared.  The sectors where workers felt the most informed and positive about preparations were: manufacturing & industry (49% and 51%), and professional services (48% and 51%).  The sector where workers felt the least informed and positive about preparations was: Healthcare (33% and 33%).

 

Explaining the findings James Stewart, Head of Brexit at KPMG UK said:

 

“As business gears up to talk to the public about Brexit, it’s worrying to hear how few firms seem to have spoken to their employees about the changes that lie ahead.  This leaves workers less well prepared to anticipate and back the changes that may be needed to position companies for growth.

 

“The public’s perceptions of whether the Brexit options will be good or bad for the country is highly related to whether their employer has explained Brexit.  This means business could have a decisive impact on the Brexit debate if it were successfully mobilised.”

 

Another feature of this survey is how many EU nationals present in the UK workforce feel their employers have explained what Brexit might bring.  Just 9% said their employer had explained what Brexit might mean in detail, 20% said their employer had explained what Brexit might mean in basic terms, and 48% reported their employer had not explained what Brexit might mean for their organisation.

 

Explaining the findings on EU nationals, Punam Birly, Employment & Immigration Partner at KPMG UK said:

 

“Despite this group being a particular flight risk it looks like businesses aren’t doing enough to discuss Brexit with their EU nationals.  Now is the time to be talking to all your workforce, dispelling myths and explaining the support on offer.  Given the potential impact of losing key staff, the cost of recruitment, and the emphasis most businesses place on the role of their people, engaging with employees on Brexit makes good business sense.”

 

Young people are particularly concerned about their employment prospects in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit.  62% of 18-24 year olds consider it likely or very likely that ‘no deal’ will result in UK job losses.  This decreases in each age band: 25-34=59%, 35-44=52%, 45-54=46%, 55-64=42%, 65+=36%. 

 

 

Ends.

 

 

Notes to editors:

 

For further information or data tables please contact:

Paul Middleton, KPMG Corporate Communications

Tel:
(0) 20 7694 2180 / Mobile: 0738 725 7543 / Email: Paul.Middleton@kpmg.co.uk

 

KPMG Press Office

Tel:  +44 (0) 207 694 8773

 

About this survey:

Hanbury Strategy is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. 4,015 adult members of the British public were polled online by Hanbury Strategy on behalf of KPMG between 31st October and 5th November 2018 using modelled data from smartphone applications to engage a nationally representative sample.  Data is weighted to the profile of all adults aged 18+. Data weighted by gender, age and region. Targets for weighted data derived from Office for National Statistics (2016).  For further details of survey methodology, please visit this link: https://hanburystrategycloud.filecloudonline.com/url/5yvi9ykajdp83f3d

 

About KPMG

KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 14,500 partners and staff.  The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.2 billion in the year ended 30 September 2017. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 154 countries and territories and has 200,000 people working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity.  Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.

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