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Public sector the second biggest employer of accountancy contractors

Public sector the second biggest employer of accountancy contractors
37% of accountancy contractors now work for the Government
The public sector is the second biggest employer of accountancy contractors in the UK, increasing its share of the contractor market from 33.9% to 37.1% over the last quarter, reveals research by giant group plc, the contractor services provider.
This is higher than the average for the public sector which employs 19.5% of the UK workforce overall, according to data from National Statistics.
According to giant, the economic uncertainty is putting greater demands on accountancy skills in the public sector, which is trying to improve its financial management in order to meet a target of achieving 30 billion of value-for-money savings by 2010.
Matthew Brown, Managing Director of giant, comments: Accountants within the Treasury have obviously seen a massive increase in their workload in the wake of the banking crisis. Boosting skills in-house isnt an option short-term.
Historically, the public sector has been portrayed as having weaker financial management skills than the private sector, and with pressure mounting on the public sector to make significant reductions to the bottom line in a short period of time, it is increasingly reliant on external accountancy skills.
According to giant, demand for accountancy contractors is likely to remain relatively steady throughout the difficult economic cycle.
Matthew Brown says: The long term underproduction of accountancy skills in the UK means there is very little slack in the job market and quality candidates are still highly sought after. Falling demand in the financial services sector will give other sectors the opportunity to up skill their workforces.
According to the giant research, 67.7% of accountancy contractors still expect their earnings to rise over the next year
Matthew Brown says: Finance departments in organisations will play a frontline role in dealing with the impact of the credit crunch both in terms of managing cost cutting programmes and reshaping business plans. This should make accountants a less volatile sector of the labour market during the downturn and ensure demand for accountancy skills remains fairly robust.


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