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Recruiting and retaining talent in the public sector

What can be done to help public sector leaders attract and retain the talent they need? An Accenture survey explores how and why.

Overview


Accenture recently completed a study— Public Services Insights: Recruiting and Retaining Talent in the Public Sector—highlighting the challenge of being able to attract and retain new talent as baby boomers start retiring in ever-increasing numbers.

Background
In March 2015, Accenture conducted an online survey of 1,103 US voting-age citizens. The purpose of the study: To gauge citizen attitudes toward public sector careers and employment, identify factors that make public sector employment attractive, and determine how to improve recruitment and retention of public sector employees.

Key Findings

Nearly half of those who are employed or have been employed in the public sector say it is an attractive place to work. But among those with no experience in government work, only 20 percent said they would find work in the public sector attractive.

We’re entering into an era where the competition for talent will be the most brutal competition we’ve ever experienced. And we have one great secret weapon.


No. 1 challenge—Finding next gen work force

Analysis

Millennials are becoming the largest generation in our workforce and will therefore be the focus for much of our new hiring. With so many baby boom employees in the public sector getting ready to retire, the perceptions and experiences of millennials take on even greater significance.

Research shows that to succeed public sector must:

  • Attract a larger percentage of people to public service—especially millennials
  • Retain those they do attract by enhancing their experience on the job

In doing both of these they can build on the public sector’s traditional strengths with respect to job security, benefits and retirement. But those alone will not be enough. They will also need to greatly enhance the attractiveness of those job attributes that can make an even bigger difference.

Recommendation
Nearly half of those who are employed or have been employed in the public sector say it is an attractive place to work. But among those with no experience in government work, only 20 percent said they would find work in the public sector attractive.

For more information on talent, retention and recruitment, please click here.