Public sector employment in Scotland: statistics for third quarter 2016

Employment snapshot statistics based on administrative records and surveys of individual public sector bodies as at September 2016.

3. Devolved Public Sector Employment in Scotland; Headcount (see Table 4)

The devolved public sector includes:

  • Devolved Civil Service (see section 5);
  • Local Government, covering Scottish Local Authorities, Police and Fire Services (up to Q1 2013), Valuation Joint Boards and Regional Transport Partnerships;
  • Police and Fire Services (Q2 2013 onwards)
  • NHS in Scotland;
  • Further Education Colleges;
  • Devolved Public Corporations;
  • Other Devolved Public Bodies (which covers Non-Departmental Bodies and other bodies).

The number of people employed in the devolved public sector has decreased by 2,270 (-0.5%) over the last year, from 487,500 in Q3 2015 to 485,200 in Q3 2016. Chart 4 shows the composition of the devolved public sector as at Q3 2016.

Chart 4: Breakdown of Devolved Public Sector Employment by Category, Headcount, Q3 2016

Chart 4: Breakdown of Devolved Public Sector Employment by Category, Headcount, Q3 2016

Source: Public Sector Employment in Scotland, Quarter 3 2016

Note: Totals may not equal the sum of the individual parts due to rounding

Over the year:

Employment in Scottish Local Government decreased by -3,750 (-1.5%) over the year to 241,000 in Q3 2016. This is partly due to staff transferring to arms' length external organisations ( ALEOs) which are not part of the public sector.

Employment in the NHS increased by 910 (+0.6%) over the year to 161,800 in Q3 2016. A detailed breakdown on this information by staffing group was published by ISD on the 6 th December 2016:

The number of Police and Fire Service employees decreased by 120 (-0.4%), from 28,200 in Q3 2015 to 28,100 in Q3 2016.

The devolved civil service saw a decrease of 1,190 (-6.6%) in employment between Q3 2015 and Q3 2016.

Over the year, employment in other public bodies increased by 1,340 (9.4%). This was mainly due to Historic Scotland (previously part of the devolved civil service) merging with the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (a non-departmental public body) to become Historic Environment Scotland, a non-departmental public body.

Employment in Further Education colleges increased by 180 (+1.3%) to 14,000 in Q3 2016.

Employment in public corporations increased by 360 (+4.9%) over the year to Q3 2016, increasing from 7,500 in Q3 2015 to 7,900 in Q3 2016.


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