EU Briefing

The impact of EU migrant labour in the UK

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The impact of EU migrant labour in the UK

Published September 2014

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This EU Briefing aims to inform the debate about the impact of the increase in EU migrant workers on the UK labour market, and particularly on young UK-born workers.

Although there is evidence of a more competitive labour market for young people seeking low-skilled, entry-level roles, our research has found that employers that hire migrant workers are also more likely to offer work experience, internships and apprenticeships – all measures that help to tackle the issue of youth unemployment. UK employers who have turned to EU migrants to fill vacancies in recent years say they have done so because these recruits have brought the experience and commitment needed to support growth.

The EU Briefing is based on CIPD research that draws on a wide range of evidence, including data from:

  • the Office for National Statistics
  • the CIPD's quarterly survey of employers
  • five online focus groups of EU migrants and young UK-born workers and
  • ten semi-structured employer interviews.

The growth of EU labour: assessing the impact on the UK labour market

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Learning to work