Industry experts highlighted concerns regarding Brexit’s effect on the industry’s ability to source talent, at a heated debate on the first day of International Confex in Olympia London, 1 March.
The session aimed to drill down into the immediate downward effect of Brexit, looking forward to offer potential solutions or strategy to meet market forces. Its speakers included James Heappey, MP and chair APPG for Events; Colin Stanbridge, chief executive, London Chamber of Commerce; Jonathan Read, managing director, Tobacco Dock; and Adam Sternberg, director, Sternberg Clarke.
Stanbridge was outspoken in his concerns: “The major concern is about workforce and access to talent. Right now it’s about telling people, ‘This is what we need to make Brexit a success’.”
Heappey (pictured) was in agreement that accessing the kind of workforce that the industry has enjoyed for the past decade is of concern. However, he also highlighted the challenges relating to access to the European Market and ensuring that the UK continues to be an attractive destination. “You are entirely justified to feel nervous. We need to move as quickly as we can to mitigate the threats and maximise the opportunities,” he said.
The session formed part of the keynote programme and was chaired by Henry Rubinstein, planning manager, Triggerfish.