Workforce planning during bleak times

A public sector view

Robinson D | IES Paper  | Institute for Employment Studies | Sep 2010

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Deep budget cuts were hitting the public sector in 2010, and would have a big impact on central and local government and on the NHS in the following years.

Within the private sector there was some evidence of economic recovery, but experience from previous recessions suggested that private sector employers would be unlikely to recruit to previous levels until there was much greater certainty about the economy.

The private sector was unlikely, therefore, to pick up those who were being shed by public sector organisations. It would be a long time before the labour market returned to buoyancy.

The challenge for the public sector over the short and medium term was to plan workforce reductions to get not only the best possible outcome for service delivery, but also a sustainable workforce to carry the organisation into the future.