Scottish Government Workforce Statistics March 2018

An Official Statistics Publication for Scotland

The latest quarterly Scottish Government Workforce Information statistics have been published today by Scotland’s Chief Statistician. These statistics cover the numbers of workers, staff sickness rates, and the diversity of staff, up to the most recent quarter ending March 2018.

The statistics show that:

  • At the end of March 2018, there were 5,648 FTE (full time equivalent) directly employed staff, an increase from last year’s figure of 5,214 at the end of March 2017. The percentage of directly employed staff in permanent (96%) and temporary (4%) categories was the same as last year (March 2017: 96%, 4%).

  • There was a 20% increase in the number (headcount) of contingent (non-directly employed) workers, from 1,044 at the end of March 2017, to 1,249 at the end of March 2018, an increase of 205 workers.

  • The staff sickness level was 7.6 average working days lost (AWDL) per staff year in the 12 month period ending March 2018 (3.4% of working days were lost). This is higher than the number of AWDL for the same period last year (7.4 AWDL March 2017).

  • At the end of March 2018, just over half (51.3%) of the workforce were female, compared to 48.7% male. The proportion of female staff is similar compared to the same period last year (50.8% March 2017).

  • The majority of staff were aged 40-49 (28.1%), 50-59 (27.4%) and 30-39 (24.3%) at the end of March 2018. In contrast, 14% were aged 16-29, and 6.2% were aged 60 or over.

  • The proportions of directly employed staff providing diversity information on ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation and religion or belief have all increased since the same period last year.


    The figures released today were produced in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

    The full statistics are available at: /publications/workforce-information/

    The statistics contain quarterly data from March 2012 to March 2018 and present: 

  • full time equivalent numbers and headcounts in each directly employed staff category
  • headcounts of contingent workers (non-directly employed workers) engaged in work for the Scottish Government
  • sickness absence levels of directly employed staff
  • headcounts of directly employed staff by: age, disability status, ethnicity, gender, marital/civil partnership status, religion or belief, and sexual orientationOfficial statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff.

    More information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed at:

    The Scottish Government uses the data internally to monitor the performance of its workforce. Other expected users of the data are likely to include the general public and media for information about the Scottish Government, and other government departments for comparative purposes.


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