Top jobs hard to fill, says study

Councils are struggling to recruit directors and assistant directors of adults’ and children’s services due to a limited pool of suitable candidates, experts have said.

The problem originated from the split in adults’ and children’s services caused by the Children Act 2004 and the increased complexity of senior roles, according to recruitment experts. It was highlighted in a report on the local government workforce by the Improvement and Development Agency published last month.

Stephen Moir, vice-president of the Public Sector People Managers’ Association, which represents council personnel directors, said local authorities that appointed directors of children’s services soon after the act had had the pick of candidates. But now with more complex roles and a limited pool recruiting to children’s and adults’ roles have become harder.

Those councils that followed had a smaller pool because some former education and social services directors declined to apply.

Maggie Hennessy, partner at recruitment consultants Gatenby Sanderson, called on authorities to look beyond people with social services backgrounds for candidates for senior adult roles.

● Download The Future Shape of Local Authorities’ Workforces



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