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EDINBURGH LOOKS AT SALARY WEIGHTINGS

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A recruitment crisis at Edinburgh City Council could lead to the introduction of salary weightings similar to those...
A recruitment crisis at Edinburgh City Council could lead to the introduction of salary weightings similar to those received by council workers in London.

A booming economy, low unemployment and high housing costs in the Scottish capital have contributed to widespread vacancies across the council, according to executive member for social services Kingsley Thomas (Lab).

'Edinburgh is a great place to live and work. But it has proved to be very expensive,' said Mr Thomas.

'In areas such as social services, people have traditionally moved throughout the country to work. Edinburgh suffers, because people may want to work here but can't afford to.'

The recruitment problem was not confined to social services, he said, but poor pay and a negative public perception, combined with the difficult nature of the job, rendered the situation in his department 'pretty acute'.

'We haven't seen the 10%-20% vacancy rates some London boroughs have had, but we have to act now to stop things getting that bad,' said Mr Thomas.

Education and city development suffer from chronic recruitment problems, with 222 and 110 vacancies respectively in April-June. Unemployment in Edinburgh currently stands at just 2.3%, well below the London rate of 3.6%.

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