Public sector job-cut threat is chance for HR to prove strategic value, says CIPD

Public sector HR professionals should use the prospect of widespread job cuts to prove their strategic value to their organisations, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has said.

Leaked Treasury documents last week revealed the government planned to cut public sector spending by 9.3% by 2014.

Meanwhile David Hillier, head of accounting and finance at Leeds University Business School, told Personnel Today the public sector could see 20% of its jobs cut, but in some areas, such as higher education, this could rise to 30%. The CIPD also revised its prediction on job cuts, up from 6% by 2014-15 to 10%.

John Philpott, chief economist at the CIPD, said: “Administrative HR is bound to be in the firing line for any cuts. This is hardly surprising given the potential scope to improve efficiency in back-office functions across the public sector and reduce the relatively high staff/HR ratios.

“This will be a challenge to HR, but also an opportunity to demonstrate that the key role of the function is strategic business partnering rather than administration.”

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