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Public sector struggling to recruit senior staff

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The government’s spending cuts are creating recruitment problems for public sector organisations as people “shy away” from the sector, a new report has warned.

The image of public sector employment is being hit, particularly at senior level, a study by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) revealed.

The survey of more than 500 employers found that four out of five reported difficulties in filling vacancies over the past few months.

The biggest increase in recruitment and retention problems was in the public sector, especially at managerial and senior levels.

Pay freezes coupled with a perceived reduction in benefits following the government’s controversial reforms may be responsible, said the report.

The public sector is three times more likely than private firms to report that its image is a problem in terms of attracting new recruits.

Rebecca Clake, of the CIPD, said: “Headlines focus on high levels of unemployment and public sector cutbacks, but those stark statistics mask an ongoing struggle for employers to find the skills and experience they need to drive their organisations forward.

“This is a particular issue in the public sector where, now more than ever, they require talented and experienced individuals at senior levels of the organisation to help steer them through times of change.

“The image of the public sector is putting off some new recruits,” she said. “This, coupled with widespread pay freezes and pension reform, makes jobs in public sector organisations less and less appealing to those individuals who have the skills required for the vacancies.”

 

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