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Private sector 'best for skills shortage'

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More than 80% of public sector organisations believe skills shortages would best be filled by private sector workers, according to a new survey.

More than 300 employers based across public services divisions including education, central and local government, housing, the NHS, charities and not-for-profit responded to the survey from recruitment company Hays.

Concerns expressed by respondents identified shortages in management skills (54%) and identified that the most valuable attributes a private sector candidate can bring to the public sector is commercial expertise (61%) and creativity (17%).

Other attributes include a different drive and ethic.

Hays says that 63% of public sector employers had noticed an upturn in applications.

Most (86%) believe this increase is beneficial with job candidates bringing a diverse range of skills experience and willingness to adapt to new methods.

Andy Robling, Director at Hays Public Services, said “The recession has forced people to re-evaluate their perception of a job in the public sector and they have come to realise that it offers comparable pay, generous benefits and a challenging, yet rewarding, environment.

“At the same time, many public sector organisations are undergoing a period of change and commercial expertise is highly valued to manage this process and drive efficiencies.

“Employers need to make sure they are tapping into this pool of talent - jobseekers with a commercial background have never been more available or more willing to make the move.”

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