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English and Maths: The Most Important Skills You Can Own

Updated: 28/07/2017

We can all agree that English and Maths skills are some of the most important that you can have, if not THE most important.

English and Maths: The Most Important Skills You Can Own

Adult learners studying in a classroom

These are the skills that play really important roles in your everyday life; getting a job, a pay rise, a promotion. Making sure they’re the best they can be can have a huge effect on your quality of life, making a difference in being able to communicate better with friends, family and colleagues, problem solving and earning a bit more money.

But unfortunately these are the very skills that employers are concerned about. The standard has been getting worse which has made them realise just how important they are.

Studies show that 46% of employers are more concerned about employees English skills in the work place than maths, 26% of employers are concerned about them both equally, 17% are more concerned about maths and only 11% said they had no concerns. Pretty concerning.

Employers are choosing not to hire because of this. A lack of qualifications in English and maths will see you struggle to get a job, a promotion or a pay rise with 25% of adults with no GCSEs of grade C or equivalent still looking for paid work. You could be missing out.

But it’s not about knowing Pythagoras and algebra inside out, nor is it about being a walking dictionary. It’s about being able to apply those skills to the job, about being able to communicate in a respected way and solving problems. When you think about it, they are essentially life skills.

Businesses are looking for people to show to them that they can apply English to communications at work:

  • Sending emails
  • Speaking to customers
  • Report writing
  • Proofreading

They also want employees who can use maths for:

  • Data analysis
  • Calculations
  • Problem solving
  • Budgeting

These skills can increase your pay and put you in the best position for promotion. With there such a gap and a need for these skills, never has there been a better time to improve your English and Maths skills to help you progress at work.

But it’s not all about employers. It’s about you. Improving the quality of your career, pay and, ultimately, your life through daily interactions. Here’s a little overview of how:

Pay Rises

As a general rule, the more qualified you are, the more money you are likely to earn throughout your career. Sounds simple enough, right? The figures tend to agree. If you don’t have your GCSEs there’s likely to be a 7% pay gap with those that do equating to over £2,000 extra in your bank a year. Improving your qualifications will also improve your finances!


63% of men and 75% of women with very low English skills have never received a promotion. If you can’t properly fill out an application form, how can you ever apply for a promotion; let alone impress on a daily basis.

Everyday Life

From getting to grips with discounts offered in shops, calculating your earnings so that you’re not paying too much tax, right through to reading bus timetables and keeping yourself healthy, a higher level of English and Maths skills will improve your quality of life.

Applying for University

As mentioned above, you’re probably going to earn more if you’re qualified to a higher level. Universities require a minimum of a GCSE grade C in English and Maths (grade 4/5 on the new system) to just get on to a course. It’s all worth it, though!

Helping with Homework

Some of you may have homework and may dread your youngster asking for help with homework, be it English or Maths. You’re not alone though. The top 5 out of 10 of the worst subjects parents struggle to help their children with are all Maths related. Data shows that children in the top 15% in Maths ability at the age of 10 earn more, so your help could be crucial.


If you would like to improve you English and Maths skills, we would love to help! Come down to our Enrolment Day on 24th August to sign up for a course. For more details, please click here.