Perth and Kinross Council tops employment list

© DC Thomson
The council headquarters in Perth.

Despite a shrinking workforce Perth and Kinross Council is still the largest employer in the area, a new report has revealed.

Over the past eight years the council has shed nearly 11% of its workforce, dropping from 6,281 to 5,595 workers.

This includes a 25% reduction in the number of chief officers. Further pruning of jobs is in the offing.

Voluntary severance has been a successful tool in reducing the workforce and a further scheme along the same lines is being promoted at the moment.

“Any future reduction in our workforce will continue to be tied into our future skills requirements, reflecting council priorities and the changing nature of how services are delivered,” says a report by chief executive Bernadette Malone.

“Perth and Kinross Council remains the largest employer in the area. The extent and pace of modernisation and transformation is set to continue.

“The strategic decisions that are taken by the council on which services we will deliver, how they will be delivered and by whom inevitably impact on the number and nature of employees we require within our workforce.

“Over the last eight years, the composition and size of our workforce has changed as the council has modernised its services, moved to new service delivery models, transformed services to have a greater focus on early intervention and prevention and embraced digital opportunities.

“Although our workforce is reducing, we must continue to recruit to key roles which are essential to service delivery.

“Like most councils, we continue to experience recruitment challenges for teaching posts, and this is more pronounced in rural area and for certain subject areas and for some promoted posts.”

An innovative approach to filling teaching posts has been implemented, the report notes.

Working in partnership with the University of Dundee 13 council employees have been retrained and have secured employment in schools across Perth and Kinross.

Other groups totalling 15 employees are at various stages of teacher training and will follow suit in taking up jobs.