THE local business community is facing a testing time with difficulties in filling posts likely to go into 2022.

Cowdenbeath businessman, Ally Booth, who has developed his own human resources company, told the town’s Rotary Club recently, that the hospitality and fruit and vegetable growing industries were the most well-known for struggling to recruit staff, but really it was something that was effecting most areas of business.

He explained that there have been two main issues over the past few years, with Brexit seeing European workers leaving the UK workplace in sizeable numbers, and the Covid-19 pandemic posing huge challenges.

Mr Booth told Rotarians: “Since things opened up again after the lockdowns caused by the Covid pandemic, many local businesses are finding it so difficult to fill vacancies.

“The pandemic did see a great many people asked to work from home which was for most a very unusual thing, but something many adapted to well.

"Since things opened up many are looking for more flexibility in their working week wanting to have a balance between the office and working from home, but some businesses want most time spent at work.

“That has led to many people looking for a change of employer, but has also contributed to businesses finding it hard to fill posts. It is something that seems certain to continue in 2022”.

Mr Booth’s company works with many companies trying to help them to find the best way to fill the vacancies they are experiencing, and he stressed: “Flexibility within the working week is something that can help businesses persuade employees to stay with them.

“However, there are so many employers finding it so difficult to get people to join them at the moment."

He added: “With the end of the year coming up fast, it is a problem that is persisting and it may well continue in 2022.”