Tag: Healthcare industry

Nurses given free parking as staff exodus ends private sector monopoly on employment perks

It’s been revealed by Socially Recruited  that an exodus of nurses is forcing the health sector to respond with an increasing array of employment perks in a desperate bid to fill roles.

The staffing firm, which recruits for big brands and organisations using social media, has reported that the proportion of jobs offering nurses free parking, free lunches and extra annual leave has at least doubled in the past year as the profession suffers a recruitment crisis.

According to Socially Recruited, 2 in 5 of its health service clients now list extra holiday as a benefit, up from 1 in 5 a year ago. The proportion that offer extra annual leave has jumped from 21.2% to 44.1%.

None of the company’s clients was listing free meals and parking 12 months ago, but now 60.4% are doing so.

Nurses are quitting the health service in record numbers in England, according to analysis by the Nuffield Trust, with 40,000 quitting in a year1. That’s equivalent to one in nine of the workforce, leaving recruiters struggling to keep up with the rate at which they need replacing.

A survey by NHS Providers has also shown that many nurses are leaving for better-paid jobs in the hospitality and retail industries2, sparking intense competition to attract and retain staff.

It comes after recent figures from the NHS Business Services Authority revealed that 66,000 NHS staff in England and Wales had stopped paying into their NHS pensions between April and July, with over one in three (23,000) citing affordability pressures.

Ben Keighley, founder of Socially Recruited, said: “Nurses are getting scarcer, and the sector is having to battle even harder just to replace those that are leaving. To stem the tide, we’ve seen an unprecedented influx of employment benefits in healthcare.

“Recruiters are throwing the proverbial kitchen sink at candidates and rolling out the red carpet in a way that, until now, was more commonly associated with the private sector.

“Competition is rife and healthcare providers aren’t just trying to outbid each other — wages in other industries, such as hospitality, have been making gains and turning the heads of nurses and other workers looking for a way out of the cost-of-living crisis.”

Share this article on social media
The sector continues to report widespread skills shortages

According to a new collaborative report from APSCo and Broadbean Technology, the number of job applications in the healthcare industry have fallen consistently since April 2021, putting added strain on an already under-resourced sector.

According to the data, the number of professionals applying for vacancies in healthcare dropped 35%, 24% and 32% in Q2, Q3 and Q4 2021 respectively. With the sector reporting widespread staffing shortages as COVID-19 continues to place pressure on the medical profession, this suggests that, despite the U-turn on vaccine mandates which is under consultation, the number of healthcare professionals looking for work is dwindling to a worryingly low number. The Home Office has added various healthcare professionals such as carers to the skilled visa list, it seems in a bid to entice healthcare professionals from abroad to work in the UK.  

Across the regions, London reported the greatest demand for healthcare staff, holding the lion’s-share of vacancies last year, followed by the West Midlands, Surrey, Essex, West Yorkshire and Kent.  

Ann Swain, CEO of APSCo commented: “It’s no secret that the healthcare arena is facing a significant shortage, but to see such a sustained decline in applicant numbers is concerning. While we believe that the recent announcement of plans to scrap the vaccine mandates for the sector may help bolster staff numbers, our data suggests that resources remain at a worryingly low level. With demand for medical staff set to increase as the Coronavirus continues to put pressure on healthcare, application numbers are likely to continue to drop. APSCo is working closely with its members and in its government lobbying to ensure the country has access to the skills it needs across all sectors, including healthcare.” 

Share this article on social media