Image problem stifles sector

Less than half of all private sector employees would consider working in
local government, according to new research released exclusively to Personnel
Today.

The Image Mirror, by the Society of Chief Personnel Officers and TMP
worldwide, shows that local government is perceived as being too regulated,
bureaucratic and dull.

The research, to be launched at Socpo’s annual conference in Scarborough
tomorrow, finds that only 45 per cent of private sector employees would
consider working in local government, despite it being highly rated for
pensions and training and development.

Nearly two-thirds of respondents from the private sector think local
government is too regulated and bureaucratic.

Less than half of private sector employees perceive job satisfaction in
local government to be good, despite eight out of 10 local council staff
claiming to have job satisfaction.

Private sector staff are also critical of the public sector’s recruitment process,
finding it long-winded and overly complex.

Keith Handley, outgoing Socpo president, urged local councils to embrace
e-HR as part of its recruitment process to overcome these shortcomings.

He said: "I am not surprised there is an image gap with people in and
out of the sector having different perceptions. I have been banging on about
how we recruit people in the sector for some time. We must extend the use of
our websites as this is the way younger people look for jobs these days.
Recruitment processes must be revised and made sharper.

"If we do not change and improve now, we will find it difficult to
deliver the services local people need."

The research polled 1,000 employees, 500 each from the public and private
sector.

www.socpo.org.uk

By Paul Nelson

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