private sector view

By Charles Wilson | 23 September 2020

I’m going to start this piece by taking us back to 2008/09 and the financial crisis. It was an unprecedented time with the world turned upside down and thousands of people being made redundant across the globe. This was, in most cases, through no fault of their own but circumstances outside of their control. At the same time many parts of the public sector in the UK were looking to increase their commercial outlook and acumen.

The situation led to candidates from the private sector looking to the public sector for new opportunities, in part because their own sector was short on the supply of new roles, but it also presented an opportunity to do something different in a new sector (often not considered before) where their skillset was in great demand.

Fast forward to 2020 and there are many synergies to be found. An unprecedented situation on a global scale, people being displaced from jobs in the private sector but also opportunities in the public sector in interesting and varied roles where commercial skills are still very much in demand.

More local authorities are turning to local authority trading companies to deliver services in a self-sustaining and more commercial way, the wider public sector is investing in joint ventures and partnership driven projects with the private sector (Government catapults) and combined authorities are taking on more demanding, commercially driven capital programmes.

There is a desire and requirement to target a new and diverse audience that will need convincing about the exciting scale and complexity of work they could get involved in and in a time of reflection due to COVID-19 this year, gives them the opportunity to do truly meaningful work with a level of job security. Employer branding and positioning is really important at this time.

Charles Wilson is practice director executive recruitment at Penna Enterprise

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