To kick off the Channel 4 Jobs Report, Business Correspondent Sarah Smith looks at what happens behind the scenes to create just one job out of the 2.5 million that are needed.
Stephen Williams at the Antique Wine Company doesn’t worry too much about the minimum wage. Many of his staff are paid six figure salaries for selling fine wines to very wealthy clients. You might think ‘austerity Britain’ is not place to be trying to sell wines that cost thousands of pounds a bottle but his business is doing very well. He has plenty of rich Russian and Chinese clients eager to empty old European wine cellars so they can toast their economic success with the very finest vintages.
The company need someone who can deal with the fast growing Asian market, someone who speaks several languages and understands Chinese culture. Will they be able to find a British job seeker who fits the bill?
In many ways it’s the story of the world economy today. But it’s also a story that is creating new jobs here in the UK. As the Antique Wine Company need to take on some new sales staff if the company is going to grow as fast as Stephen thinks it can. He is looking for someone who knows their way around a fine bottle of wine. But also someone who knows how to do business, someone who can deal with some the richest people in the world and still get a good deal.
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The lucky candidate will earn between £100,000 and £200,000 a year and will be expected to bring in business worth several times that amount. This is a very nice job for someone – you are expected to taste several fine wines each week – but will it go to Brit? The company need someone who can deal with the fast growing Asian market, someone who speaks several languages and understands Chinese culture. Will they be able to find a British job seeker who fits the bill?
Stephen thinks improving access to funding for entrepreneurs to start up or expand their business is the most likely way to create jobs. And he believes subsidies to employers to develop training programmes to enable trainees to be recruited would offer new job possibilities.
Stay with us as we track job creation in the UK – from the point of view of the businesses and the job-seekers – and put together the Channel 4 Jobs Report for 2012.