Driving business growth
Within the public sector, job opportunities rose 10% between quarter four 2013 and quarter one 2014, while the private sector fared even better, with a 44% upswing in vacancies between the two quarters. We’re encouraged to see this overall growth trend having a positive impact on opportunities within the HR sphere for both public and private sector roles.
Public sector focus on upskilling
Looking at the public sector, demand for HR contractors has come largely from the NHS, and specifically from upskilling initiatives by the newly-formed Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), leading to an on-going requirement for training professionals. One of the key areas CCGs are focusing on is improving GP management styles, to enable doctors in general practice to effectively interpret policy and apply it in their day to day dealings with patients. As a result, HR specialists with a background in management training are currently highly sought after.
Elsewhere within the NHS, there’s a real need for experienced recruitment managers to lead the ongoing hiring drives for clinical staff. CCGs are utilising assessment days – both in the UK and abroad – in a quest to recruit additional NHS nurses, and HR professionals with a clinical background are required to oversee these initiatives. Individuals with the requisite background and skills are thin on the ground, so those who do can expect to be snapped up quickly.
Employee engagement drive in the private sector
In terms of the private sector, the employee relations side continues to be extremely busy. In particular, employers are expanding their HR teams in an effort to facilitate employee engagement programmes. As the economy recovers and companies seek to position themselves as employers of choice, management teams are reviewing their HR strategies to be more people focused, and CSR has been determined as a major pull in attracting employees and encouraging them to stay. Our clients are therefore demanding HR contractors who have experience of identifying appropriate CSR affiliations and incorporating them throughout the business in areas such as job specifications and internal communications.