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Scottish Public Sector Employment

Published: 16 Mar 2016 09:30

A National Statistics Publication for Scotland.

Public Sector Employment Statistics for Scotland, released today by Scotland's Chief Statistician, show that over the year to Q4 2015, employment in the public sector in Scotland has decreased by 400 (down 0.1 per cent) to 545,400. The lowest Q4 level since the series began in 1999. This decrease is driven by reductions in the devolved public sector and the transfer of staff in local government to arms' length external organisations (ALEOs).

In Q4 2015, public sector employment accounted for 20.9 per cent of total employment in the country and private sector employment accounts for 79.1 per cent of total employment in Scotland.

Employment in the private sector in Scotland has increased by 1.1 per cent over the past year with 2,067,300 people employed in the private sector.

In Scotland, the devolved public sector decreased by 500 over the year while the reserved public sector decreased by 100.

The figures released today were produced by independent statistical staff free from any political interference, in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Notes to editors

The full National Statistics publication can be accessed here

In addition to the National Statistics publication there is also a Public Sector Employment Statistics Websection containing:

  • Local government staffing by local authority and gender.
  • Detailed tables showing a full-time series – all quarters back to Q1 1999.
  • Further information on the number of youth employment (16-24) in the devolved public sector for Q1 2013, Q1 2014 and Q1 2015.
The data are not seasonally adjusted and therefore comparisons should only be made with the same quarter over time.

Devolved public bodies refer to public bodies which are the responsibility of the Scottish Government or Scottish Parliament. This includes the core Scottish Government and Agencies, Non-Ministerial Departments, Local Authorities, Police and Fire Services, NHS, Non-Departmental Public Bodies, Public Corporations and other significant national bodies.

Transfer of staff in local government to arms' length external organisations (ALEOs):

On 1st April 2015, 754 staff transferred from Scottish Borders Council to SB Cares, 255 staff transferred from East Renfrewshire Council to East Renfrewshire Culture and Leisure Limited in 2nd July 2015 and on 1st December 2015, 344 staff transferred from Angus Council to Angus Alive.

Further information on Labour Market statistics within Scotland can be accessed here.

Official statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff – more information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed here.