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Budget 2011: Businesses need financial incentives to employ IT graduates

Chancellor George Osborne's Budget must fund financial incentives to hire unemployed IT graduates, according to an industry expert.

The chancellor is expected to announce £300m funding later today to tackle unemployment among 18-24-year-olds. Last year's figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) show that computer science graduates are the largest group of unemployed graduates in the UK.

George Molyneaux, research director at Salary Services Limited (SSL), says: "We have still got 17% of last year's IT graduates without employment. How do we get these into work?"

Molyneaux believes the government must use the budget to provide businesses with incentives to employ IT graduates.

"Incentives should be financial. It could be in the form of NI [national insurance] adjustments or an apprenticeship allowance," he says.

In January, a report by E-Skills UK, the sector skills council for business and information technology, said employment in the IT industry over the next 10 years will grow 2.19% a year - five times faster than other UK industries.

This means 110,000 new recruits are required, with 17% of those entrants coming directly from education, says E-Skills UK.



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